Nappy Recycling

I wonder, I do you know:

Britain is to get its first disposable nappy recycling plant, which will convert the mountain of waste which goes into landfill every day into plastic, cladding and roof tiles. Knowaste, a Canadian company which recycles nappies and other products in the US, plans to invest more than £20m in the UK plant over five years.

The facility, earmarked for Tyseley, Birmingham, will enable the recycling of around 30,000 tonnes of nappies, about 4% of Britain\’s nappy waste a year, and aims to eventually recycle up to 13%.

So, what will be the extra CO2 emissions (and remember to take off the methane collected and used as those in landfill rot) created by this scheme?

Umm, the company doesn\’t actually tell us.

There is a collection cost, which will be charged by your waste collection company. In addition, Knowaste charges a ‘gate fee’ to use its recycling facility. The costs of recycling are cost competitive compared to taking nappy waste to landfill. The latter will mean a landfill gate fee and landfill taxes which are currently £24 per tonne and set to increase by £8 per tonne each year from April 2008 until at least 2010/11. By using the Knowaste process, local authorities will be able to avoid any penalties that may occur from not meeting the landfill diversion targets.

It appears that it\’s only cost competitive because of the landfill taxes imposed by hte European Union: those taxes which we know are wildly overblown in hte first place.


9 thoughts on “Nappy Recycling”

  1. We got a free disposable nappy supply: we kept the used ones in a wee fridge in the garage and the bloke from the hospital collected them every week. Ain’t research wonderful? Our answer to the great question “what does the bloke put on his census form as occupation?” was ‘night-soil collector’.

  2. At my university all staff are about to be issued with a hemp sack with which we will be expected to individually traipse between about 7 different recycling bins (office waste bins to be abolished). At the same time we were cordially invited on a time management course. You couldn’t make it up!

    As you point out, recycling is many cases only money-saving because of the punitive EU landfill taxes. Ditto the risible claims that we’re “running out of room” for landfill.

    I’m aware of things like Greenie Watch, but could anyone recommend some good websites for recycling sceptics like me?

    Tim adds: Umm, here? Lots of that sort of stuff…

  3. Lol!

    I’m still boggling at the concept that you can encourage recycling by simply removing office waste bins…..

  4. The beeb has a report with slightly more details here:-

    It has this telling paragraph in it:-

    Knowaste has already made a foray into the Netherlands – albeit one which has now collapsed because, it says, of the country’s preference for incineration which meant it was unable to compete on price.

    Burn the stuff. It makes sense.

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