Coastwatch seeks condom, sanitary pads and nappy levy


Coastwatch seeks condom and nappy levy.

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One thought on “Coastwatch seeks condom, sanitary pads and nappy levy

  1. This is not the first time someone has clumsily attempted to transfer the success of the plastic bag levy to another unrelated issue. (It was previously suggested for chewing-gum.) The plastic bag levy works because it dramatically reduced the number of plastic bags being used, and it increased the number of uses per bag. The change from free to non-free resulted in a dramatic change of behaviour.
    This will clearly not work for nappies or sanitary towels. I have experience only with the former (as a parent) but can assume that my reasoning will apply to both. Nobody uses more nappies than they need to. There’s no realistic way of making nappies last longer or doing without. So people who buy nappies will continue to buy and use as many as before. When the time comes to dispose of them, they will do so as they have always done. The price going up will have no effect on this behaviour. They’re not going to start washing and reusing disposable nappies, or sanitary towels.
    Unless the money is ring-fenced to deal with mitigating the effects of pollution due to improper disposal of these items, or unless the levy is so large that switching to reusable nappies or towels becomes a more attractive option for a significant number of people, this is going to do nothing but squeeze people harder by raising the price of essential items, in an already difficult economy.
    What would really help is an internationally binding petroleum extraction levy. If set high enough, this would result in people paying the real price for goods and services, which would make imported goods less attractive and kick-start research into alternative sources of energy and biodegradable products.

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