Pune start-Up Recycles Sanitary Pads: Did you know that soiled menstrual pads can be recycled to make useful products? A Pune-based start-up has done it and also won the SEED Low Carbon Awards (SEED Awards).
The organisation processes up to 3,000 pads per day and converts them into recyclable cellulose and plastic, as per a report. Interestingly, it diverts over 8,000 pads monthly from landfills to make reusable products. In fact, this can save up to 40 tonnes of carbon dioxide per month. SEED is a UN endeavour.
Believe it or not, sanitary pad pollution is a reality that needs to be tackled. Eco-friendly measures are required to tackle this wastage. A study titled Menstrual Products and their Disposal’ revealed, that in India 12.3 billion or 113,000 tonnes of used sanitary pads are dumped in landfills.
According to Ecofemme, a social enterprise based in Auroville, on an average, a single woman generates 125kg of disposable sanitary waste during her menstruating years. This calls for more eco-friendly alternatives. A lot of youngsters have taken up the gauntlet to solve this crisis. Earlier this year, students of a government school in Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district of Telangana came up with the idea of ‘zero waste’ sanitary napkins. They named it Stree Raksha Pads. They have made these using water hyacinth, fenugreek, turmeric, neem and sabja seeds.
Telangana: Students of a govt school in Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district make 'zero waste' sanitary napkins 'Stree Raksha Pads'. "Pads available in the market don't decompose easily. To solve this problem, we made this pad that is made of organic materials," says a student. (04.01) pic.twitter.com/OUrLG3MrAD
— ANI (@ANI) January 4, 2021
This awareness is not limited to the most elite institutions of our country. According to a report in 2017, female students in tribal schools near Araku, Puducherry switched to using reusable eco-friendly cloth napkins to end the pollution caused by used sanitary pads that are dumped in the landfills. The advantage of using them is that they last for over two years. This makes it a pocket-friendly option for girls. So in place of decomposing the pads, the product can be reused. Read about it here.
A lot of women have also turned to menstrual cups, period panties and cloth pads as these are healthier, economical, sustainable and more environmentally friendly ways of managing one’s period. Read more about them.