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Published on 13 September 2021
Cash will be put back in the pockets of parents who switch to reusable nappies, under a rebate program launched today by the City of Hobart.
The program is a waste reduction initiative as part of the City’s goal of achieving zero landfill waste by 2030.
Disposable nappies make up around 5 per cent of all residential waste to landfill in Hobart, equating to approximately 466 tonnes – or the equivalent of 100 full garbage trucks – each year. They are the fourth most prevalent material in Hobart’s residential waste, behind food waste, plastic packaging, and textiles.
“Disposable nappies are an enormous contributor to the City’s landfill footprint,” City Infrastructure Committee Chair Bill Harvey said. “If we’re going to achieve the goal of being a zero-waste city, then it’s vital that we change our attitudes toward them.”
On average, a child requires about 6000 disposable nappies from birth to toilet training. By comparison, it takes around 24 reusable cloth nappies for fulfil the same needs. Substituting just one nappy a day can divert more than 1000 individual nappies from landfill over the child’s life.
Cloth nappies have evolved over the years, with the old towelling rectangles giving way to stylish designs that are as easy to use as disposables and are easy to wash, and the benefits of switching to cloth nappies go beyond waste management. Conservative estimates suggest reusable nappies will save families around $2000 per child.
City of Hobart is offering 100 residents a 50 per cent rebate (up to $50) on the price of cloth nappies to assist families in making the switch from disposables. The program is also available for the purchase of reusable sanitary items such as menstrual cups, cloth pads, and period underwear.
“For a lot of people, the initial outlay can be difficult with cloth nappies, especially if they’re feeling uncertain about the effectiveness,” Cr Harvey said. “We hope this rebate will encourage people to take that step to try something different and help contribute to a more sustainable future.”
Residents of the City of Hobart local government area can now apply for the rebate via the City of Hobart’s website. Eligible recipients will be notified via email within 30 days of their application being received. Applications will require proof of purchase and proof of residency within the City of Hobart local government area. Full terms and conditions are available at hobartcity.com.au/clothnappies.