Managing nappies

With the red lidded bins to be collected fortnightly under the new service, young families may be concerned about how quickly their bins will fill up with nappies and whether or not it will smell.

The good news is that with the new system there will be more space overall in your bins each fortnight compared with the current service (860L compared to 720L), and once you have the hang of putting your food organics into the weekly green lidded bin there should be plenty of space left in your red lidded bin.

In regards to the smell, a ‘Community Nappy Trial’ conducted by Lake Macquarie City Council showed that the odour of bins containing nappies at the end of a fortnight were no worse than the odour of regular garbage bins at the end of a week. Furthermore, the trial showed that odour does not significantly increase with time, nor with the amount of nappies in the bin.

If the smell is an issue, there are a number of things you can do to decrease the odour from nappies in your bin:

  • Wrap the nappy into itself using the tabs
  • Seal nappies tightly in plastic bags (we suggest double bagging or scented bags) before placing in the garbage bin
  • Store the garbage bin in the shade and out of direct sunlight if possible
  • Make sure your garbage bin lid closes properly and there are no cracks in the bin sides. If your bin is broken or cracked, contact Council to request a repair or replacement
  • Consider using general odour neutralizing products in your bin, including cat litter, crystals or bicarbonate of soda
  • Place some odour neutralising products in the foot of a stocking and hang it on the inside of the red lidded bin, tying the stocking to the bin lid handle
  • If possible, tip the contents of the nappy down the toilet before disposing
  • Consider using modern cloth nappies

Wagga Wagga City Council will work with households to ensure the correct separation of waste in the standard service.  However provisions will be made for residents with additional waste management needs which may include households managing nappy waste.  Details relating to this will be made available closer to the roll out date of 2 April 2018.

Disposable nappy facts1

  • Can only be used once
  • Take 500 years to decompose
  • Use three times more energy, 20 times more raw materials and 2 times more water than reusables during the manufacturing process
  • Australian's use 5.6M nappies per day
  • 2 billion disposable nappies go to Australian landfills each year


Modern cloth nappies

While they’re not for everyone, when used regularly modern cloth nappies are a cost effective and environmentally friendly alternative to disposable nappies and they won’t fill up your bin.

Unlike the old terry towelling squares, modern cloth nappies are compact, easy to use and even fashionable.

For more information on cloth nappies and how to use them go to the Australian Nappy Association website.

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