Putting the Motherhood into motherhood issues Chief Minister Gallagher is celebrating a reduction in the volume of used nappies going into the recycling bins.
A ‘no nappies in your recycling bin’ campaign was launched late last year specifically targeting new parents with the distribution of magnets in hospital bounty bags, which are given to every parent following the birth of their child.
“The issue of nappies in recycling bins was identified last year as not only interrupting operations at the Mugga Lane Materials Recovery Facility (MRF) but also posing a health risk to workers on the sorting line.
“As many as 6 disposable nappies per minute were arriving in the recycling delivered to the MRF.
“Soiled nappies in recycling items pose significant health risks to workers particularly given that by the time the nappies are presented on the sorting line they are no longer a neat little bundle. When the nappies break open they contaminate our valuable recycling and the sorting line needs to be cleaned.
“In response to these issues, the ACT NoWaste in conjunction with the contractor Thiess Services produced a magnet to be distributed to new parents. To date, over 1,700 magnets have been distributed.
Since early December 2011 the magnets have been provided in bounty bags through maternity wards at the Canberra Hospital, Calvary John James and Bruce hospitals, child and family health centres, paediatric wards and day care centres. The magnets are also being distributed by ACT NOWaste staff at community and other appropriate events.
“Anecdotally the ‘no nappies in your recycling bin’ campaign is already having a positive impact. Theiss Services has reported that since the introduction of the campaign the presence of nappies on the sorting line has reduced by around half and that quantitative data on nappies will be collected over the coming months to help evaluate the success of the campaign.