Damage Caused by Wipes
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Resources explaining the flushability issue are listed below, including reports, legislation information, and news articles.
Reports & Studies
IWSFG Verifies wipes made with Veocel fibres.
“Inappropriate disposal of ‘flushable’ consumer products – reasons for concern,” Water Science & Technology, February 26, 2020.
Defining ‘Flushability’ for Sewer Use, Ryerson University, March 31, 2019 – This report presents flushability test results for over 100 consumer products.
Nonwoven Fabric Product Analysis Summary Report, Community Engaged Learning Project at Western University, April 2, 2019 – Analyzes the packaging of 25 wipe products and the level of compliance with the INDA 2nd Edition Code of Practice: Communicating Appropriate Disposable Pathways for Nonwoven Wipes to Protect Wastewater Systems.
Washington State bill, Concerning the labeling of disposable wipes products – Legislation introduced in 2020 to provide detailed instructions on how non-flushable wipes should be labeled as “Do Not Flush.” The bill passed both legislative bodies and was signed into law on 1 July 2022.
California AB 1672 – Legislation proposed in 2019 and continuing into 2020 to establish a labeling standard for non-flushable wipes.
District of Columbia Nonwoven Disposable Products Act of 2016 – Legislation passed in 2016 to require flushability and labeling standards for flushable and non-flushable wipes.
District of Columbia proposed regulations for implementing the Nonwoven Disposable Products Act of 2016. IWSFG member National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) submitted comments on this proposal.
Video which shows the IWSFG logo and how it can be used to educate consumers about what is suitable for toilet flushing (2023).
Barry Orr, in the Flushability Lab and Toronto Metropolitan University, explains to consumers what is safe to flush (2022)
Video comparison of product disintegration under the IWSFG and INDA/EDANA GD4 Slosh box parameters
Infographic by the City of London about the communities knowledge of what can and cannot be flushed down the toilet.
Poster notice of what to flush and what shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet.
Poster explaining the issue with improperly flushed consumer products.
The National Association of Clean Water Agencies (NACWA) offers “Toilets Are Not Trashcans” toilet stickers and digital logos for educational purposes.
Canadian poster that “Toilets are not Garbage Cans”.
Media has provided extensive attention to the problems associated with wipes and other products that are inappropriately flushed. The list below provides a sample of this media attention, but is not an exhaustive list.
Don’t flush your flushable wipes, city and students remind Londoners, CBC News, 21 Mar 2023
Needles in sewage adding new hazards, implications for sewer workers, Jean Sorrenson, Daily Commercial News by Construct Connect, 25 Nov 2022
What is up with wipes? An update on Flushability Standards, Robert Haller and Barry Orr, Environmental Science and Engineering, 1 Aug 2022
Flushable Wipes – the musical, featuring foggy the fatberg (Canadian Water Works Association Water Source, eBulletin (2022)
Eco-groups fight to wipe out wipe clogs with study that disproves flushability, Environmental Science & Engineering Magazine, May 4, 2019.
30 Mar Ocean Heroes: Barry Orr, International Water Services Flushability Group, No Plastic Please.life, March 30, 2019.