NJ Trying to Pass ‘Do Not Flush’ Law for Bathroom Wipes
New Jersey lawmakers are hard at work, trying to make sure non-flushable disposable wipes don’t wind up in your toilet bowl.
Legislation is pending in the state Senate Commerce Committee that would require all non-flushable disposable wipes to be labeled "Do Not Flush."
The measure defines a “non-flushable nonwoven disposable wipe product” to mean any pre-moistened wipe product constructed from nonwoven sheets and marketed for diapering, personal hygiene, or bathroom surface cleaning purposes.
If a wipe is deemed non-flushable, it would have to carry a Do Not Flush logo on the package, showing someone dropping an item into a toilet with a circle and red slash through the figure.
The bill was introduced by state Sen. Nicholas Scutari, D-Union.
“We support any legislation that works to reduce the amount of waste getting into our water infrastructure,” says Doug O’Malley, the director of Environment New Jersey.
“Putting a very clear label on a disposable wipe is a good reminder to let people know this goes in the garbage, not down the toilet.”
He said just because you can flush something down the toilet it doesn’t mean you should.
“Disposable wipes might feel like you can put them down the toilet but they should not end up in our pipes. We don’t want that anywhere near our waterways or our treatment systems.”
He noted tossing a non-disposable wipe that won’t degrade into a toilet becomes an issue for a homeowner’s plumbing system and municipal sewer systems.
“And it’s not just one wipe, it’s literally thousands of wipes that are being flushed down our pipes and that creates big problems.”
Under the Do Not Flush bill, the state Department of Environmental Protection and the Division of Consumer Affairs in the Department of Law and Public Safety would enforce the bill’s provisions.
Violators would be subject to civil penalties of up to $5,000 for each offense.