Study: Cloth diapers just as bad

July 4, 2007

Cloth diapers are no better for the environment than the disposable variety, a British government study found.

"Reusable nappies may reduce demands on landfill but they still impact on the environment in other ways such as water and energy used in washing and drying them." Ben Bradshaw, the new British health minister and a former environment minister told the House of Commons, The Telegraph reported.

A four-year study by the British Environment Agency found that the electricity used and greenhouses gases generated washing and drying cloth diapers was equally damaging to the environment as burying disposable diapers in landfills.

The Taxpayers' Alliance said the study was an embarrassment for the government-funded Real Nappy Campaign, which has spent nearly $5 million over three years promoting cloth diapers, The Telegraph reported.

About 3 billion disposable diapers are thrown away in Britain every year, the Telegraph said. Only about 5 percent of parents with children in diapers choose cloth.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International

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