CASA And INDA Welcome Introduction Of WIPPES Act In U.S. Senate: Bill Creates New Federal ‘Do Not Flush’ Labeling Mandates

CARY, N.C. — March 30, 2022 — The California Association of Sanitation Agencies (CASA) and INDA, Association of the Nonwoven Fabrics Industry joined in welcoming the recent introduction of the WIPPES Act in the U.S. Senate by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Susan Collins (R-ME).

This bipartisan legislation is intended to address the growing problem of sewer system clogs caused by improper disposal of consumer wipes like baby wipes, household cleaning wipes, cosmetic wipes and others that are not intended to be disposed of in toilets. Improper disposal of these wipes can have significant negative impacts on wastewater infrastructure, including causing sewer spills. The bill would help address this problem by establishing federal requirements for these disposable wipes to carry prominent “Do Not Flush” labeling on packaging. Additionally, the bill would provide funding for an Environmental Protection Agency-administered grant program focused on educating consumers about how to recognize “Do Not Flush” labeling, identify relevant products, and understand the impacts that flushing these products can have on wastewater treatment infrastructure.

“CASA applauds Senator Merkley and Senator Collins for introducing the WIPPES Act. This bipartisan legislation addresses the flushing of non-flushable wipes that has plagued the clean water sector for decades and protects the billions of dollars ratepayers have invested to clean up our waterways and protect public health,” said CASA Executive Director Adam Link. “Lacking proper disposal instructions, consumers unwittingly end up flushing these single-use, synthetic wipes that can clog pipes, pumps, and treatment equipment,” he continued. “Establishing commonsense ‘Do Not Flush’ labeling practices addresses this problem at the source. CASA also appreciates the bill’s grants program to support education and outreach activities that expand ratepayer awareness of the “Do Not Flush” label and ensure these wipes do not make their way into our wastewater systems.”

“There are different wipes for different purposes with different recommended disposal paths. The wipes industry is committed to responsibly managing those wipes products that should not be flushed and protecting public infrastructure and the environment,” said INDA President Dave Rousse.

“Prominent ‘Do Not Flush’ labeling, visual symbols on packages and robust education programs are critical to raising consumer awareness about proper disposal of these products,” he continued. “INDA applauds Senator Merkley’s and Senator Collins’ vision and work to address this issue in a meaningful way. We look forward to working with the wastewater sector and other stakeholders to support this bill’s swift passage in Congress.”

Posted: March 30, 2022

Source: INDA, Association Of The Nonwoven Fabrics Industry