• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Used paper towels in compost?  RSS feed

 
Richard Grevers
Posts: 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Now that we are responsible for maintaining the restrooms in our new business premises, we have a steady supply of used paper towels.
We could just send these to recycling, but I was wondering if they'd be better put to use as dry/carbon material in a hot compost?
Would you do this, or do you think there's too much of a biohazard risk (transfer of human pathogens to the soil)?
 
Leila Rich
steward
Posts: 3999
Location: Wellington, New Zealand. Temperate, coastal, sandy, windy,
88
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I can only say what I would do, and that's absolutely use them.
As far as I'm aware, the standard human 'stuff' on a paper towel wouldn't stand a chance in hot compost!
I don't know a lot about pathogen vectors, but really the only potentially problematic thing I can think of would be faecal contamination.
Shaking the bin around and having a look first should give you a pretty good idea...
Over here, they don't recycle used paper towels, so that option's out anyway.
 
R Hasting
Posts: 183
Location: Mineola, Texas
11
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Richard Grevers wrote:Now that we are responsible for maintaining the restrooms in our new business premises, we have a steady supply of used paper towels.
We could just send these to recycling, but I was wondering if they'd be better put to use as dry/carbon material in a hot compost?
Would you do this, or do you think there's too much of a biohazard risk (transfer of human pathogens to the soil)?


If you can use the brown paper, that would be best. It doesn't contain the dioxins that white paper would...
 
Richard Grevers
Posts: 5
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Talking to someone over the weekend, they pointed out that paper towels wouldn't be a good idea if they contained residues of antibacterial soap, since the last thing we want to do is kill all the good bacteria in the heap. Fortunately, we also control the choice of soap in the dispensers. Now to find (or make!) a safe liquid soap that's affordable in bulk.
 
Burra Maluca
Mother Tree
Posts: 10007
Location: Portugal
923
bee bike books duck forest garden greening the desert solar trees wofati
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Richard Grevers wrote:. Now to find (or make!) a safe liquid soap that's affordable in bulk.


I just make 'ordinary' soap, with extra water so it stays soft, then use a stick-blender to whizz it up with a load more water to make liquid soap as and when I need it. It's not only affordable, it's positively cheap!
 
I yam what I yam and that's all that I yam - the great philosopher Popeye. Tiny ad:
This is an example of the new permies.com Thread Boost feature
https://permies.com/wiki/61482/Thread-Boost-feature
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!