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Use 24 washable nappies rather than 5000 disposables per baby saving 200kgs CO2e and a mountain of nappy waste. 

Real nappies have come a long way since the days of terry towelling squares, with shaped and fitted, easy to use nappies in attractive designs and fabrics including cotton, silk, wool and bamboo,

Washable nappies save waste, up to 40% of the emissions and a lot of money. Disposable nappies are made of paper pulp, plastics and super-absorbent chemicals and many people choose real nappies for a more natural alternative.

Using real nappies puts you in control of your carbon emissions as it is the way in which you care for them which determines the impact. 

You can wash your own or, in some areas, use a laundry service which delivers a supply of freshly laundered nappies to your home every week. 

Washing soiled nappies at 60oC is all you need for home use and you can throw wet nappies in with the rest of your laundry at 40oC.     

A laundry service will wash nappies at 72oC, the temperature used by hospitals to prevent cross infection. 

You can limit the climate impact of your baby's nappies by: 

  • Line drying outside whenever possible
  • Tumble drying as little as possible
  • When replacing your washing appliances, choosing energy efficient A+ rated machines
  • Not washing above 60oC
  • Washing full loads
  • Reusing nappies on another baby
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Carbon Savings
Total Carbon saved on this action 200 kg CO2e
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  •  Climates admin: 

    I used real nappies on my three children and then reused them for years as dog towels. Admittedly the more modern shaped nappies have limited use for dogs, but they're probably far more convenient than the terry towelling squares and prefolds that I used. 

    The pretty patterned, popper or velcro fastening waterproof covers are great and look so much nicer than disposables in the summer when your baby spends a lot of time running around with very little on. 

    I never found the washing to be a burden, It was just another element of the baby routine and we never ran out of nappies. When, for two of my babies, I was lucky enough to have a local laundry service for some of the time, this was a real boon and took all the effort out of it. 

    I did appreciate not having to lug home bulky nappies from the shops. 

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