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Fighting Fatbergs - why not before now?

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Fatbergs are becoming famous* and yet we hesitate to legislate against wipes, and other contaminants. The leading baby wipe manufacturers are big players like Johnson & Johnson, Procter & Gamble and Kimberly-Clark Corporation. Large sewer-clogging wet wipe blockages cost city councils $millions each year*. In Qld at least, wet wipes, paper towels, tampons, and even cat litter could carry an accredited 'flushable' logo by 2022 to let consumers know that products adhere to national standards, will not clog up sewage systems and cause minimal damage to the environment. Why did this take so long?

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-08-31/qld-standard-fatbergs-clogging-sewerage-network/100418350?mc_cid=eb71d0cd1b&mc_eid=cb6c5aa65f

*https://www.atlasobscura.com/articles/whats-inside-fatbergs

*https://www.aquatechtrade.com/news/wastewater/largest-fatbergs-uk/



What do you think?


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Comments
Toby Marshall @ 2021.09.18 6:16 AM

Great Jeremy. And why did it take so long? And only just Queensland.

Good to see an Old Cranner fighting the good green fight!  And I see that Jason Graham-Nye is fighting against the scourge of disposable nappies - something I tried to fight against 25 years ago and miserably failed!


Jeremy Wright @ 2021.09.24 4:36 AM
Toby, Great to hear from you - and maybe we'll prevail, even against the scourge of disposable nappies - despite the current Govt presenting a dodgy report. Join us in the good green fight!

Jo Kirby @ 2021.10.28 4:36 AM

This is an important issue you raise and grew in seriousness during recent panic buying of toilet paper following notifications of lockdowns. Many people, missing out on toilet paper, opted for wipes, paper towels, serviettes and tissues.  

It should be noted that Kimberley Clark had to front the ACC in 2014 regarding promotion on their packaging of baby wipes that they were 'flushable'. Indeed, they were (and continue to be); however, the issue is that they are not 'dispersible' and this is the issue at hand. Unfortunately, unsuspecting consumers, made the reasonable assumption that 'flushable' meant that it is okay to flush.

Kimberley Clark faced enormous fines for their 'misleading' promotions and I understand, have since removed the term, 'flushable' from their packaging. 

Clearly though, the urgency in educating the public of 'flushable' v 'dispersible' should remain a focus. Perhaps this is something Sydney Water (for NSW) could launch? The only silver lining here with the limited understanding of the terms, is that plumbers will continue to be busy.


IdeaSpies @ 2021.10.28 4:36 AM
Excellent points Jo- thanks! You could share this post on Linkedin (use the share icons under it) and tag Sydney Water


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