Parents in Carmarthenshire will soon be able to recycle their children’s nappies.
Carmarthenshire County Council is launching a free fortnightly collection service for parents to recycle their nappies instead of putting them in with their black bag waste.
Parents will be able to sign up for the purple bags this spring.
The council already provides the purple bags for the collection of hygiene waste, and this service will be extended to include children’s nappies.
Not only will it divert this type of waste from landfill, but it will also help to increase the council’s recycling rates.
Last year the council recycled 66 per cent of its waste. However, more needs to be done if it is to meet Welsh Government’s 70% recycling target by 2025.
As a result, nappy recycling is just the first of a number of changes the council is making to its waste services over the next two years.
Later this year, in the autumn, the council will start collecting glass every three weeks for the majority of households, and blue bags will be collected weekly instead of fortnightly.
The increase in recycling provision will see black bags collected every three weeks instead.
In 2024, weekly collections of glass, paper, cardboard, cans and plastic will be introduced, along with textiles and batteries and small household appliances.
Cabinet Member for the Environment, Cllr Hazel Evans said: “Families with young children can find themselves producing more black bags if their children are in nappies, so our new nappy recycling collections will give parents an alternative and better option to help us divert nappy waste from landfill.
“Figures show that almost half (46%) of the contents of black bags are recyclable, so there is still a lot more we can do to reduce our waste.
“More than 4,000 people took part in our consultation on our future waste strategy, and the majority of people said they wanted to recycle more.
“We have listened to what our residents want, and following the nappy collections in the spring, we will start collecting glass in the autumn, along with weekly blue bag collections. Then from 2024 we will be introducing more changes so that we can recycle even more and work towards achieving a 70 per cent recycling rate by 2025.”
Around 200million nappies are thrown away in Wales every year, but Capel Hendre-based Natural UK has helped find a solution with NappiCycle. The recovery process cleans and separates the plastics and cellulose fibres for re-use; the cellulose fibres being used for a variety of commercial purposes, including the production of fibre boards and acoustic panelling, and the plastics sent to secondary re-processors for recycling. A trial scheme is also underway where the cellulose fibres from the nappies are being used to resurface roads.
Cllr Evans added: “I want to thank all our residents for all their efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle – it all adds up and makes a big difference, and the new nappy collections and other changes we have coming in, will support residents to recycle even more.”