Why should we reduce, reuse, and recycle? The clothing industry is big business. It is responsible for creating millions of jobs that range from factory workers to designers and retail sales workers. Not to mention satellite industries like the fashion press, models & modelling agencies. However, the disturbing impact of this massive industry is that it is now the second largest polluter in the world; second only to large oil corporations. “Fast fashion” creates a high demand that subsequently churns out massive amounts of cheap clothing. The consequence of the “disposable” fashion industry are huge increases in carbon emissions and accelerating global warming.
As ridiculous as it sounds, it takes approximately 700 gallons of water just to produce one new cotton t-shirt. The clothing industry is also responsible for high amounts of chemicals being released into the atmosphere, because the processes of printing and dyeing fabrics are chemically intensive, resulting in the dumping of massive amounts of polluted water into rivers and streams–our “clean” drinking water.
Now that you’ve let that sink in. What can we do to combat it?
Goodbye Waste, Hello Clothing Exchange
Reducing the environmental impact of the fashion industry is extremely important. We are past the days of the disposable consumerist mentality. Today, the impact of over 7 billion people on our planet is simply too great. In North America alone, consumers are buying and disposing 5 times as much clothing as we did 25 years ago. It is saddening to hear that over 85% of all of this clothing ends up in the landfill. This amounts to 10.5 million tons of clothing–an equivalent of 81 pounds of clothing per person–put to waste each year. To make matters worse, 95% of that total could have been recycled. Did you know the United States EPA reports current clothing and textile recycling has a greater impact on reducing greenhouse gases than the recycling of yard waste, glass, and plastic? Imagine what we could accomplish!
To limit the unnecessary disposal of quality items, the environmentally-conscious are turning to clothing exchanges and repurposing gently worn pieces. As we move forward collectively, these practices, as well as investing in high quality clothing instead of fast fashion will extend a piece’s lifespan by two or even three times. Designer and brand name clothing is usually well-made out of high quality material, giving it extra long-wearing power. Classic tailored pieces tend to not go out of style, so passing them on to a new owner makes sense, both financially and environmentally, and even stylishly!
Make a Positive Environmental Impact Today with myWardrobe
myWardrobe is an app created to connect like-minded, fashion and environmentally-savvy sellers with buyers who will appreciate their taste and style. By passing on gently worn, high quality items into new hands, you are helping to limit the amount of clothing that ends up in the landfill, and reduce the massive negative impact of the clothing production industry. Do your part to reduce greenhouse gases and global warming – sign up for myWardrobe Online today to help keep great quality clothing in circulation – and out of the landfill!