Paper or dryer

What is the best environmental choice: using paper towels or a blow dryer for drying your hands ( after going to a public toilet)?

The paper is probably NOT recycled and it is probably bleached with chlorine. The drier is around 1500W and it takes ca 30 seconds to dry your hands.

What if the the paper were recycled and non-bleached (or at least bleached with a better method than chlorine gas or sodium hypochlorite).

What if the electricity to the drier came from a renewable source like sun, wind, water, biogas or ... ? (excluding natural gas since it is a fossil fuel!)

Anyone have any clue?


At January 15, 2006, Blogger AEnima said...

I've asked myself that question every single time I use a public toilet. The portuguese see to find the dryer the most effective method, whereas the americans for example use the paper towels. I myself tend to use the paper towels more for the paper seems to (not be recycled aftwards) but at least come from recycling sources... by it´s texture that is usually pretty rough and not bleached, or not too much. Otherwise I just let my hands air dry... yeah... air dry... shake them and don´t touch the doorknobs... they´ll eventually air day :)

There are allways those rollon towells that can be washed and reused... ever thought of that?


At January 15, 2006, Blogger Luigi Mario said...

I also thought about that...you use electricity to dry your hands, and sometimes just bunr your face when you wash it also. SO i also prefered recycled paper towels... and also the time you spend on a bathtroom trying to dry your hands and how hot those wc get :P

At January 15, 2006, Blogger Johan said...

those "never-ending-rolls" does strike me as being very hygienic. off-white paper towels probably is unbleached but is in most cases not from re-cycled paper and also not from FSC accredited forest.

some restaurants use small towels for single-use before being washed again.

yepp it can get pretty hot in there. maybe more effective fans that allow for much lowered effect in the heater would do the trick.

but then someone probably has made a life cycle analysis (LCA) of how to best dry your hands in a public toilet.

At January 17, 2006, Blogger Johan said...

oh, i meant to say the those "never-ending" textiles rolls does NOT seem very hygienic. no washing and very slow drying, yummy for bacterias!

At August 05, 2010, Blogger Johan said...

apparently paper towel is better than electric dryer, but Dysons is much better



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