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Baby Diaper Recycling Launched in Australia

International Recycling Firm Provides Innovative Solution to Mounting Environmental Concern

TORONTO, Canada, September 2, 2004 --/WORLD-WIRE/--
Knowaste LLC, an international leader in recycling technologies, announced today that the company's patented disposable diaper recycling technology will now be made available in Australia through a long-term, exclusive relationship with SGS Australia PTY Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Geneva-based SGS Group. Today's announcement is a significant step forward for Knowaste in establishing a worldwide market for the recycling of disposable diapers, which pose significant environmental concerns when disposed in landfills or incinerated.

Parents concerned about the negative environmental impacts of their children's disposable diapers will now have, for the first time in Australia, an alternate disposal solution. Diaper recycling will be made available in the city of Melbourne, with plans to roll out in Sydney, Brisbane and Perth as part of a home diaper delivery and recycling service offered by SGS Australia to households. The program, locally coined "MyPlanet Recycling", will first launch in the city of Melbourne in September 2004, with the local councils Bayside, Casey, Brimbank and Cardinia the first to join the program.

"A balance must be achieved between the environmental concerns with disposable diapers and their strong popularity with parents," said Roy Brown, president and chief executive officer of Knowaste LLC. "Knowaste's diaper recycling technology is a proven and cost-effective opportunity for communities and their residents seeking a solution."

"Knowaste intends to ensure diaper recycling is on the world map of environmental and recycling movements and our relationship with SGS in Australia is a significant step forward in this endeavor, " added Brown.

In addition to planned operations within Australia, the SGS Group has also purchased exclusive licensing rights to launch Knowaste diaper recycling technologies in the country of New Zealand.

"We are very pleased to have forged this strategic partnership with Knowaste," said Peter Hart, Australasian Manager for SGS Group. "The company's proven expertise in diaper recycling, combined with our existing corporate environmental services, will provide Australian residents with a unique and cost-effective opportunity to reduce waste and meet rising recycling mandates."

Disposable diapers (both baby and adult incontinent) pose significant problems for the world community as populations increase and age, new regulatory measures are implemented, landfill capacities dwindle and overall environmental and conservation consciousness rises:

  • The use of disposable diapers has been increasing steadily over the past 20 years as a result of their convenience, increasing from 40% in 1993 to an estimated 91% of Australian parents using them now.

  • The number of people age 65 and older more than tripled over the past half-century to a record 420 million worldwide, leaving more and more elderly people dependent on disposable diapers.

  • Each year, more than 800 million disposable diapers are used in Australia, which amounts to 110,000 tons/110 million kg of solid waste being sent to landfills each year, requiring 145,000 cubic meters of landfill space.

  • Each child using disposable diapers will generate approximately one ton/1,000 kg of waste prior to being toilet trained.

  • A disposable diaper may take up to 500 years to decompose, essentially making them present in landfills forever.

  • Disposable diapers, containing untreated human waste, in landfills present significant contamination threats to precious groundwater supplies.

  • Diapers constitute one of the largest single household items still going straight to landfills. Individual communities and their residents have done a good job of recycling aluminum, paper, glass and plastics…now we must turn our attention to other segments of the waste stream.
Recycling diapers is convenient and easy. The Knowaste processor sanitizes and recycles the diapers' primary components, wood pulp and plastic. The recycled plastic can be used in the production of plastic wood, roof shingles and vinyl wood siding. The long fibrous wood pulp can be used in many different applications, including wallpaper, shoe insoles and oil filters.

Knowaste has proven in its European operations that a viable and profitable market exists for the recycled end products.

A number of new environmental initiatives are currently being pursued by both the public and private sector in Australia, including alternative energy sources and new recycling technologies, as part of an ongoing commitment to preserving existing natural resources. Diaper recycling sets an important new environmental standard and offers an effective and cost-conscious recycling strategy for communities and countries facing great challenges in addressing the disposal of solid waste.

About Knowaste LLC

Based in Toronto, Canada, Knowaste is a private company dedicated to the development and implementation of innovative environmental solutions for the world's difficult waste issues. Established in 1989 and operating on an international scale, Knowaste LLC is the proprietor of patented technologies for the recycling of absorbent hygiene products, including disposable baby diapers, incontinence products and disposable bed liners, into sanitized reusable paper pulp and plastic components.

Knowaste has spent the last decade developing and successfully applying recycling technology that can be applied to both large and small markets. The company's Netherlands facility is the hallmark of diaper recycling. The company opened its state-of-the-art facility in 1999 and can process up to one hundred thousand tons of diaper material per year. This plant is designed to meet the needs of a densely populated area and serves a number of European cities. The company has also placed a marketing emphasis on the production of small, individual processors that can be scaled to any community size, such as those being constructed for SGS Australia. For more information on the company, please visit its web site at

Fiona Hutton
Red Gate Communications
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818-259-7091 mobile

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