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The Problem with Menstrual Waste

Roosevelt High School, Johnstown, Colorado, USA

Olivia Chamberlain, Maerron Lovern, and Cassidy Poley from Roosevelt High School noticed a common theme in their lives; that menstrual products produce a lot of waste. These single-use products are some of the most common pollutants in watersheds, with tampon applicators being the second most common plastic found on beaches. These products take a long time to break down and have unfortunate implications on ecosystems. To address this problem, Olivia, Maerron, and Cassidy distributed multi-use period products, specifically menstrual cups, to community members and peers. Menstrual cups can last up to ten years, save thousands of dollars for consumers, and are better for the health of watersheds and communities. Ten cups were distributed to their community’s menstruators and an educational flyer on how they can reduce their period waste. Olivia, Maerron, and Cassidy helped contribute to Targets 6.3 and 14.1 of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Menstrual cup in packaging with pamphlet of watershed info, students posing with menstrual cup