Did you know? Every year in the United States of America, approximately 18 million diapers are tossed into the garbage. Studies have shown that it can take up to 500 years for one diaper to degrade (and up to 50 years for “biodegradable” diapers). Furthermore, it’s estimated that up to 200,000 trees are lost each year to make room for disposable diapers for babies in the U.S. alone.
In landfills, dirty diapers release methane and other toxic chemicals into the atmosphere, exacerbating the phenomena known as climate change. Because a new solution to keep babies’ booties clean is needed, researchers at Chung Hua University in Taiwan developed a machine that is capable of recycling diapers.
The user-friendly machine can convert 220 pounds of dirty diapers into clean, raw materials in just one hour. First, the machine sanitizes the soiled diapers on site. Then, the packages of poo are sent through a process called stratification. In this step, the machine separates and salvages all of the reusable materials in the products. Next, the raw materials are transported to a recycling center, where they are rested to make things like absorbent pads, paper, cardboard and, yes, more diapers.
Not only does the machine use less water than the average toilet, it is estimated to help save approximately 864,000 trees every year. Reportedly, the team is working to develop their prototype into a large facility that can recycle over 10 tons of dirty diapers in a single day.
Watch the video below to learn more:
Soiled diapers presently make up between 3 and 5 percent of the world’s trash. If they aren’t recycled or buried in landfills, they are incinerated. As GoodNewsNetwork reports, this releases toxic pathogens and chemicals into the atmosphere, contributing to air pollution.
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