It is our everyday choices that are affecting the environment. From taking juice boxes, jug of water, putting clothes in a dryer to hanging them for drying everything we do relates to environment. Cloth diapers or disposable diapers also represent a common choice for mothers, which must be considered for eco-friendliness. After all, we have to determine the less harmful alternatives to ensure a green environment for our future generations, while making it comfortable for our babies. There are two main types of diapers; disposable and cloth. Let’s have a look at both and find out which one is the best.
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Disposable Diapers are Filling Land
A child uses about 5,300 disposable diapers from the period of birth to toilet training. The disposable diapers are the 3rd largest single waste stream product behind beverage containers and newspapers. In fact, compared to the waste collection including glass, tin cans and paper, the ratio of diapers is even higher.
Landfills do not have the appropriate conditions to decompose diapers as they retain their original volume, weight and form. Human feces containing harmful pathogens can come in contact with the atmosphere through rodents, insects, groundwater and birds.
Disposable Diapers Use 37% More Water
Disposable diapers produce less sewage and the human waste goes to dump sites through them. This violates World Health Organization’s guidelines. On the other hand, washing cloth diapers uses 50-70 gal of water every three days. A toilet trained person also uses 70 gal of water every three days. This makes wastewater, from washing cloth diapers, less harmful compared to the one from paper and plastics containing solvents, heavy metals, sludge, dioxins and unreacted polymers.
The disposable material has a significant impact on the environment. Even though cloth diapers also contribute to air pollution, the air pollution caused by disposables is quite noxious. Pulp bleaching emits furans and dioxins into the air with incineration. Incineration generates toxic air emissions and toxic ash.
About 20,000,000,000 disposables are discarded into landfill sites every year in Canada and the US.
Why Cloth Diapers?
Image Credit: GlowBugClothDiapers
Disposable diapers cost at least $2,000 before a child is potty trained. The cost extends to $3,000 if you choose premium or biodegradable options. On the other hand, twenty of the least expensive cloth diapers set you back less than $400. Even by including water bills and detergent, you are still at half the cost of disposables.
More Absorbent Cloth Diapers
Cloth diapers are more absorbent. You do not need to change your baby in the middle of the night like you otherwise have to with disposables. Overall, cloth diapers are great for the environment and make a cost friendly choice over the disposables.
Cloth diapers offer a natural way to baby diapering. Not only they are cheaper but also mean fewer rashes for your baby in the long run. Since they don’t have a chemical lining as available in the disposable diapers, your baby will soon feel wet and this way you can start the potty training sooner than usual.