Modern Nappies - The choice is yours

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Modern Nappies - The choice is yours

Post by Stacey » Wed Jul 11, 2007 8:59 pm

Modern Nappies - The choice is yours
The Nappy Network Media Release
11th July 2007

The Nappy Network is about informed choice for parents, not about disposables Vs cloth. Of course, we believe modern cloth nappies are better in many ways...or we wouldnt all be using them! :)

There has lately been a revival of the 'nappy debate' by Kimberly-Clark, manufacturers of Huggies Disposables. While exposure of the issues is always a good thing, there seems to be a lot of confusion.

The Nappy Network would like to take a bit of spin off the recent Kimberly-Clark media release, and clear up some misinformation:

Kimberly-Clark quote a 2005 UK study by the Environment Agency, which compares the ecological impact of both cloth nappy and disposable manufacturing and use. This study has already been discredited - it was flawed, and bears little relevance to NZ conditions. The Environment Agency itself has admitted the study was flawed and is conducting a review that will hopefully be more true to the facts of modern cloth nappy use in the UK.

Even in its flawed state, it actually DOES show that cloth nappies
cause LESS harm to the environment overall. The Life Cycle Analysis
results show that both systems use similar amounts of energy but the
disposable system uses more materials and puts more into landfill.

Cloth nappies also give parents the choice of using even 'greener' methods of washing and using their nappies (reducing their 'global warming impact' up to another 24%).

Much more information can be found on the Womens Environmental Network website:

The NZ Ministry for the Environment comments on this study here:

The KC media release focuses on waste to landfill. And well it should - disposables are the single largest product category of household waste, costing Christchurch ratepayers around $600,000 a year to landfill just disposables. While construction waste and green waste are obviously large issues for NZ landfills - most of that does not come from households, but from industry. Important campaigns are already in place to reduce construction waste and green waste.

The Christchurch City Councils recent Modern Cloth Nappy subsidy scheme was such a success that it was extended twice. And now several other councils are funding similar schemes. The feedback from parents has been outstanding, and councils can obviously see the advantages in waste reduction.

Just one child in cloth nappies will save around 2 tonnes of solid waste from going to landfill.

Aside from the important environmental concerns - modern cloth nappies give parents more choice financially, they allow parents to choose between natural and synthetic fibres, may last through several children (increasing savings and decreasing eco-impact), they can be as simple to use as a disposable, they come in the widest range of styles, colours, prints, and fabrics, they can keep babys skin dry and healthy - or wet to assist with toilet learning, they allow parents to choose the level of absorbency - trim for day and boosted for no-leak night-time use, and the option of supporting NZ business with more and more modern cloth nappies being produced right here in NZ.

Modern Cloth Nappies are about choice - not guilt. The Nappy Network (Incorporated) is a non-profit society run by volunteers - we dont make any money by advocating modern cloth nappies, we do so because we believe in informed choice for parents.


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