The Untold Impact of Disposable Menstrual Products on Landfills
In North America alone, a staggering 20 billion pads and other single-use menstrual pads are being dumped in landfills every year. Out of that number, 73 million women based in North America are estimated to throw 125 to 150 kilograms of disposable menstrual products throughout their lives. Plastic, as we all know it, takes hundreds of years to decompose and will continue to exist, eventually polluting the Earth.
By making the switch to Topsy Daisy, you will make a remarkable contribution to eradicating single-use products that harm the environment. In an estimate, one Topsy Daisy pad effectively replaces 120 single-use menstrual products.
Undercover the Truth about Resource Consumption and Environmental By-Products
Little do consumers know that the trash from single-use menstrual products isn’t just the trash that has been produced, there are components from the manufacturing process as well. Since tampons and single-use products are made up of viscose rayon, chemicals are utilized to convert wood into fibers that are found in menstrual pads. After that, a series of bleaching components are used to turn them white and another batch of chemicals to enhance its absorbent properties and the preferred scent.
Aside from the undisclosed chemicals used in the manufacturing process, there’s another identified as Dioxin that is a threat to every user’s health. Sad to say, a lot of these chemicals’ effects are unknown in the long run, and manufacturers aren’t doing much to increase the public’s awareness of its use.
The good thing is, TopsyDaisy’s menstrual pads are made with all-natural and organic fabric, namely: cotton flannel, cotton fleece, and polyurethane laminate. With the combination of the three, we minimize the use of single-use menstrual pads because one TopsyDaisy product is durable enough to last for a maximum of 10 years. Also, you’ll only have to use resources like water and soap to wash TopsyDaisy’s menstrual pads to use it again.
The Debate on Disposables and Cloth
Concerning the point mentioned above, we compiled numerous excerpts from studies and researches that show how the use of cloth is compared to the continued patronage of disposables.
“In 1991, Carl Lehrburger undertook a life-cycle analysis of diapers, his second study for NADS (the National Association of Diaper Services). It was the most detailed study to date of the environmental impact of single-use diapers and the first one not funded by the disposables industry. Lehrburger found that, compared to reusable diapers, throwaways generate seven times more solid waste when discarded and three times more waste in the manufacturing process. In addition, effluents from the plastic, pulp, and paper industries are far more hazardous than those from the cotton-growing and -manufacturing processes. Single-use diapers consume less water than reusables laundered at home, but more than those sent to a commercial diaper service. Washing diapers at home, however, uses 50 to 70 gallons of water about every three days—about the same as flushing a regular-flow toilet five times a day. These 1991 figures for gallons of water could probably be improved on using today’s more energy-efficient washing machines.
According to the American Petroleum Institute, 3.5 billion gallons of oil were used to produce the 18 million throwaway diapers that Lehrburger studied in 1991. Approximately 7 billion gallons of oil each year are required to feed our disposable-diaper habit today, almost four times as much oil as is estimated to be in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. In 1991, the Landbank Consultancy, an independent environmental agency in the United Kingdom, reviewed and evaluated the available research on the environmental impact of throwaway diapers. Their conclusion: compared to cloth diapers, throwaway diapers use 20 times more raw materials, three times more energy, and twice as much water; they generate 60 times more waste.”
Although there isn’t a study that compares cloth and disposables when it comes to other aspects, there is more than enough evidence to conclude that Topsy Daisy’s menstrual products are more environmentally-friendly than any of the disposables ever were.
Plastic Pollution – The Unpainted Picture
Sad as it may seem, a disgusting number of tampon applicators and various menstrual products were seen floating off beaches and other bodies of water. More worse is when you can see how aquatic animals consume disposables mistaking it as food. In light of this matter, here is an excerpt from The Plastic Sea written by Paul Watson.
“A June 2006 United Nations environmental program report estimated that there are an average of 46,000 pieces of plastic debris floating on or near the surface of every square mile of ocean. We live in a plastic convenience culture; virtually every human being on this planet uses plastic materials directly and indirectly every single day. Our babies begin life on Earth by using some 210 million pounds of plastic diaper liners each year; we give them plastic milk bottles and plastic toys, and buy their food in plastic jars, paying with a plastic credit card. Even avoiding those babies by using contraceptives results in mass disposal of billions of latex condoms, diaphragms, and hard plastic birth control pill containers each year. Every year we eat and drink from some 34 billion newly manufactured bottles and containers. We patronize fast food restaurants and buy products that consume another 14 billion pounds of plastic. In total, our societies produce an estimated 60 billion tons of plastic material every year. Each of us on average uses 190 pounds of plastic annually: bottled water, fast food packaging, furniture, syringes, computers and computer diskettes, packing materials, garbage bags and so much more. When you consider that this plastic does not biodegrade and remains in our ecosystems permanently, we are looking at an incredibly high volume of accumulated plastic trash that has been built up since the mid-20th century. Where does it go? There are only three places it can go: our earth, our air and our oceans.”