Copenhagen to recycle diapers in bid to cut city's waste

Ritzau/The Local
Ritzau/The Local - [email protected]
Copenhagen to recycle diapers in bid to cut city's waste
Copenhagen will recycle a large proportion of used diapers from childcare facilities and homes from 2024. Photo: Signe Goldmann/Ritzau Scanpix

Next year will see a new scheme introduced in Copenhagen to recycle a large number of the messy diapers produced by babies in the city.


Most new parents will tell you that used nappies (diapers) bulk out rubbish (trash) bags considerably until little ones reach potty training age.

Copenhagen Municipality wants to bring down the extra waste and will issue 4,800 containers for used nappies for use from next year, news wire Ritzau reports after the city municipality’s council voted the scheme through on Thursday.

The scheme will focus on apartment buildings where at least six nappy-wearing children live and will also be used by early childcare institutions like vuggestuer (creches).

READ ALSO: Vuggestue or dagpleje? The difference between Denmark’s early childcare options

“No particular smell pollution is expected because the nappies are usually disposed of in one or more bags before they are put in the containers in the yard,” the municipal proposal states.


The scheme is estimated to potentially recycle 3,340 tonnes of nappies per year, according to the municipality. Around 11,800 tonnes of nappies are currently incinerated in Copenhagen every year.

The recycling process itself will not take place in Denmark, given that no company in the country presides over the necessary facilities for the job.

Nappy recycling plants are available in countries including the Netherlands, Italy and Wales, according to Copenhagen Municipality.

The destination of Copenhagen’s dirty diapers is yet to be confirmed.

The city government’s technical department (Teknik- og miljøforvaltningen) plans to send out a contract for tender in the EU this autumn before finalising an agreement with a contractor for 2024, the plan states.

No figure is given for the expected saving on CO2 emissions associated with the scheme, which will cost households in the capital an extra 33 kroner per year on waste disposal costs charged by the municipality.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

See Also