An urgent email received from sumofus.org
According to sumofus.org, North America’s appetite for luxury toilet paper is destroying Canada’s vast and majestic old-growth boreal forests, worsening climate change, endangering wildlife, and affecting hundreds of Indigenous communities across the country.
According to a report from experts in the field,North American retail giant Costco’s own brand is one of the worst offenders. It’s cutting down a million trees a year from the boreal forest — just to be flushed away.
Costco brings in over $150 billion USD a year and toilet paper is its biggest selling item. There is a push to get it to stop boreal forest sourcing, and using recycled content instead, it would save millions of trees.
Costco’s plans expand further into Australia, the UK and Europe.
Advocates from Sumorus.org aren’t keen about Costco’s destruction of forests.
The Canadian boreal forest is the largest intact forest in the world, covering almost 60% of Canada and home to 600 Indigenous communities. The forest is a critical proponent in the fight against climate change, as it stores the carbon equivalent of nearly twice the world’s recoverable oil reserves in its soil.
Over the last twenty years, 28 million acres of Canadian boreal forest — that’s roughly the size of England — have been cut down just to make toilet paper.
Toilet paper companies don’t have to use virgin pulp. Other corporations make 100% post-consumer recycled toilet paper and provide a great alternative. It’s time that Costco did the same.
Together, with our friends at SumOfUs, the NRDC and Stand.earth, we could help them to shift the entire tissue industry to protect forests and mitigate climate change.
SumOfUs has forced corporations to use environmentally friendly solutions before. When they found that out Starbucks hadn’t kept its promise to serve a 100% recyclable paper cup, almost 400,000 members just like yourself pressured the world’s largest corporate coffee chain to make good on their promise. And it worked! Starbucks committed to produce a fully recyclable and compostable cup within the next three years.
With Costco, there’s no time to lose. It’s time for it to end its wasteful and destructive practices, and finally, put the people and the planet ahead of its own profits.
Thanks for all that you do,
Amelia and the team at SumOfUs
Wiped out: America’s love of luxury toilet paper is destroying Canadian forests, The Guardian, 01 March 2019
The Issue with Tissue: How the U.S. Is Flushing Forests Away, NRDC, 20 February 2019