Cloth diapers - Advantages

Portrait of washable diapers in Quebec

Here are some interesting facts from the " Portrait of washable diapers in Quebec ", 2009.

For a single child it will be necessary to cut down 4.5 trees in order to produce the 200 kg of flake paste necessary for their manufacture. It will also use about 25 kg of plastic and 67 kg of crude oil.

The manufacture of 20 washable diapers requires only 10 kg of cotton.

In Quebec, we have approximately 600 million disposable diapers per year. This represents the third largest waste in landfill sites with the 60,000 tonnes of waste they generate annually. A single child will need about a ton of diapers before they reach the potty stage.

Parents who choose to use cloth diapers normally purchase between 15 and 25 cloth diapers. They have an average lifespan of more than two years. Parents use 300 times less cloth diapers than disposable diapers.

According to some studies, the disposable diaper is used for about five hours, but it takes between 200 and 500 years to partially decompose, depending on the surrounding conditions.

Cloth diapers can be used for one or more children. A single washable diaper can be used about 200 times. When cloth diapers are no longer used, they can easily be recycled into cloths. When discarded, they take two to six months to completely decompose.

The purchase of washable diapers also encourages the local economy, since there are several Quebec companies that manufacture them, unlike disposable diapers, which are almost entirely manufactured in the United States and Europe.

A complete set of cloth diapers costs on average between $450 and $650 and requires only one trip during the purchase. Electricity costs for maintenance are approximately $50.00 per year. In comparison, for a child who will be changed approximately 6,000 times before reaching the age of potty training, the cost is expected to be between $1,500 and $2,500 for disposable diapers depending on the brand and size used, as well as dozens of trips spread over two and a half years resulting in additional expenditure of time and money. The savings made with washable diapers is all the greater if they are reused for a second child.

Electricity costs related to machine washing and drying average $110.00 from birth to potty training, counting washes every 2 to 3 days, for 2.5 years. Drying on a clothesline obviously reduces these costs. It would also cost $20.00 of laundry detergent for the same period