Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Day Fifty-Two - A Load of Crap

Switching from Disposable Diapers to Something More Eco-Friendly

OK, I obviously have a BIG confession to make. My son and daughter both use bleached, non-biodegradable, plastic-laden Pampers. Why have I put off this monumental change for fifty-two days? The reason is two-fold: 1. I buy their diapers online and buy several cases at a time, so I'm still working on the batch I bought in early June. 2. Yuck.

But the stats (and even the common sense) show that disposables are bad. Duh. Here's some poo-facts:

  • Five million tons of untreated waste and a total of 2 billion tons of urine, feces, plastic and paper are added to landfills annually.
  • It takes80,000 pounds of plastic and over 200,000 trees a year to manufacture the disposable diapers for American babies.
  • The untreated waste placed in landfills by dirty disposable diapers poses a threat to our ground water.
In my heart of hearts, I have known that I would have to address this issue sooner or later. I guess I was hoping I could get Daphne potty-trained and that Ethan would suddenly stop having nightly accidents before I became consumed by the guilt. But, every night as I sit down to blog, the nagging feeling comes back and I just know that I need to make a change. So today I took some time to look into alternatives to the eco-nightmare disposables I currently use.

I was VERY surprised to find that there are a number of more eco-friendly options available out there. It's no longer simply cloth vs. disposable anymore. Here's what I found:
  • Disposables with a Conscience - These are disposable diapers that are chlorine-free, latex-free, fragrance-free, TBT-free and are manufactured in the US to minimize transport.
  • Flushable Diapers - These have washable liners and exteriors, and use flushable (or compostable) liners.
  • Pull Up Style Training Pants - Organically grown cotton terry and knits, with a waterproof layer.
  • Pre-Folded Velcro Cloth Diapers - A vast improvement on the old "fold and pin", these are available in cotton, organic cotton or bamboo and utilize snap-in liners or polyester covers.

I tell you, things have come a long way since the days of a rectangular piece of cloth and plastic rubber pants! I was VERY encouraged to find that I had so many choices available. After checking them all out and weighing the pros and cons, I think I'm going to give the gdiapers a try for Daphne and get Ethan some of the bedwetter pants. I'll also push a little harder on the potty training and stop letting Ethan take a cup of water to bed!


Ethan uses one pull-up each night and Daphne goes through about six diapers a day, for a grand total of seven diapers a day, roughly fifty per week, two-thousand six hundred disposables per year.

Difficulty Level: 3 out of 5

I'm nervous about leaks and having to wash more than just wet diapers. However, I am encouraged by the testimonials I have read on the products and hope that it will be easier than I expect. I'll let you know how it goes.


Jason Graham-Nye said...

Thanks so much for using gDiapers. My name is Jason Graham-Nye and I am one of the founders of gDiapers. Please get in touch if you have any questions. My wife Kimberley and I and our whole team here are here to help.


dad/ CEO
503 546 4666

Why Go Green? said...

Holy crap, folks, how's THAT for customer service?!?!?! Yeah, the gdiapers haven't even arrived at my doorstep, but I think I'm already a customer for life!

Whitney said...

Was just thinking this evening that if we don't get my 2 1/2 year old son potty trained by the time I run out of the pull-ups i've already purchased, I'm going to have to do something different. gDiapers sounds like a great way to go. Thanks for sharing!

Burbanmom said...

Whitney... if you want to try them, you're welcome to Daphne's leftovers. She's got a size large "starter set" and an entire pack of refills. Yours for the asking....

Could I BE more happy about her peeing on the potty?!?!?!?

Anonymous said...

Im my experience-- cloth diapers are so much better then disposables. I used the old hospital styled diapers with pins and rubber pants when my kids were babies, and I still believe it's the best method around today.