How You Can Save Environment from Waste Clothes

How You Can Save Environment from Waste Clothes

The fashion industry is swinging on its full pace. Since clothing is a vital part of human’s life and became the eighth largest segment in day-to-day household spending. The big players are constantly launching new and stylish trends with highly competitive prices. Although it sounds good to follow the fast paced fashion trends with comparatively cheap prices. But it is creating a sheer load on our environment in shape of textile waste. The clothing consumption has significantly increased for last 03 decades. And according to Greenpeace study, today we buy 60% more clothing than we did 15 years ago. The fast fashion trend and our crazy buying behavior are polluting our environment desperately. Unfortunately, the fashion industry was estimated the second largest waste producer after Oil and Gas.

According to “The Atlantic”, the average North American consumer buys 64 items of clothes per anum. It means, an average consumer buys 1.2 garments per weak. And he/she creates 82 pounds of unwanted clothes per anum for the environment.  On the other hand, as per Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs data, it is estimated that 1,130,000 tons of clothing was purchased in UK in 2016. And this was almost 180,000 tons higher than year 2012. And as per the research findings, the average clothing life in UK is around 3.3 years. Whereas, the other research shows that it is only 2.2 years and then it discarded or donated. For the last ten years, the turnover of waste clothes in UK has been significantly increased.

Brands Efforts Toward Waste Clothes:

Since the contribution of fashion industry towards environment pollution is increasing day by day. So, the joint efforts are being carried out by the big players to sustain the environment. The below you will see the story of some brands from the them:

H&M:

The big chain H&M launched its Conscious Collection which is made with recycled material. Not only this, the Garment Collection (Year-2013) range was also made with recycled material. As per company’s announcement, you can drop your old clothes/home textiles of any brand to our local store. We will recycle it and give it new life. Up-till now, the company claimed that they have collected 32000 tons waste garments to give them a new life. Moreover in 2017, H&M offered $5.8 million to Hong Kong Research Institute of Textile and Apparel to develop such chemical technology which recycle blended textile.

Sainsbury:

The famous retailer Sainsbury in collaboration with Oxfam, trying to urges its customers to donate unwanted clothes to its collection points. But as of now, the overall result regarding donation is not as good as expected. As per UK research findings, around 49% respondents don’t donate clothes because they are worn out or dirty. Whereas, 16% respondents don’t have enough time to sort out old clothes or visit collection center for donation. And 6% respondents don’t know this thing that the clothes can be recycled.

Levi & Strauss:

The same thing Levi’s did in 2016, it has partnered with EVRNU and created first sustainable jeans. This jean was made with 05 discarded T-shirt’s renewed fiber. And this “511” jeans was not only use waste clothes but also use 98% less water than virgin cotton products.

Inditex:

The Spanish brand Inditex is teaming up with Lenzing for its 2016-2020 environment strategy plan. The Lenzing recycles its off cuts into cotton Lyocell mix. This project will start with 500 tons of textile waste and with an aim to uplift it around 3000 tons within few years. As per company’s statement, they will provide enough fabric to Lenzing to produce 48 million garments. Moreover, they are collaborating with local charity Cáritas, now they are planning to install 1500-2000 garments collection bins in Spain’s major hubs.

Keeping in view the current consumer’s buying trend and behavior and it’s directly effect on environment. We need to restrict our buying behavior and extend the garment’s wearing life. If we add nine months in current life then we can definitely reduce environmental impact around 20-30%. While buying a new cloth, we need to see this whether we could use the same around 30 times? If no then leave this item. And for this, always buy quality garments and don’t prefer quantity over quality. And last but not least, Donate, Donate and Donate. As this is the only way, we could play a healthy and positive contribution towards our environment.

Why Water Pollution is More Critical Than You Think

 Why Water Pollution is More Critical Than You Think

Water is life and it’s a main driving force for all living creatures of our planet. As per Slovakian proverb, “Pure water is the world’s first and foremost medicine”. We as human beings are the solely responsible for the pollution of this precious natural resource. Scientists are continuously discovering the reasons of water pollution. And as per their findings, one of the main reason of water pollution is our industries and especially the textile and clothing industry. No doubt the textile and clothing sector is catering the basic needs of the human beings. But on the other hand, it is also the main cause of water pollution and shortage.

As most of the industrial processing operations are totally depend upon water. The world’s environment organizations are really concerned about environment as well as water pollution issue. Now, they are working together to find out the ways for pollution free world.

Water Pollution in Textile & Clothing:

As mentioned earlier the textile and clothing industry is major entity of water consumption and pollution. The whole fabric making (De-sizing, Scouring, Bleaching and Mercerizing) and garment manufacturing (denim/non-woven laundry) process requires the plenty of water. And the water discharge from fabric and garment making process has full of hazardous chemical and metals.

Although there are ways to treat the water for reusable yet the treatment solution is a bit costly. And most of the small and medium mills avoid to install such pricey treatment plant into their production facility. So, when the untreated water of the mills dilutes into our rivers and lakes then it causes the sever health and environment issues.

Fashion Industry Trends:

The other studies show that the “micro-plastic” is a major component of synthetic clothing which is polluting our water. And it is worse than already banned plastic “microbeads” from cosmetics. And one more recent studies proves “microfibers” from synthetic clothing pollute water even worse than “micro-plastics”.

As per the recent research study of International Union for Conservation of Nature, the micro plastics contribute up to 31% in ocean’s annual pollution. And almost two third of this pollution derive from synthetic textile and car’s tyres. And other than industrial processing; these micro-plastics also enter into the water in everyday home wash and driving. As per study, a new fleece jacket release 1.7 grams of microfibers on each home wash. And polluting content quantity would be double in case of old jacket. This polluted water with microfibers (which is more harmful than micro plastics) directly affect the sea world. These microfibers absorb chemicals and penetrate into animal tissues in a high quantity.

The pollution rate of micro-plastic and microfibers varies country to country. As per recent research on fishes of Indonesia and America, the Indonesian fish was more contaminated with plastic whereas the American fish was infected with microfibers. In few countries car’s tyres causes the main pollution of micro plastics. Whereas, in other continents, synthetic textile is the main reason of micro-plastic pollution.

Water Saving Measures:

Keeping in view the present scenario, we should be more careful about the main causes of microfibers and micro-plastics pollution. And for this, we should make such clothes which uses high quality of natural fibers. We should change our washing instruments by adding washing bag and filters so that it can stop the debris and other fabric fibers.

For industrial processing, the Control Union (CU) issued new standard named Global Recycle Standard (GRS) for wastewater and chemicals. As per the standards, the wastewater treatment and chemical (sustainable chemical) usage should be in accordance with GOTS and Oekotex 100 standards.  The certification and installation cost of water treatment plant is high so small business normally owners avoid to do this. So, here the Govt. should take some productive measures and combine the industrial units at one place. In this way, they can share the combine water treatment plant and other mutual benefits for cost savings. Furthermore, the Govt. should take measures to promote the “World Water Day” (22nd March) theme (“Why Waste Water”). So, that everyone should know the importance of this valuable natural resource.