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Fast Fashion Waste!



Have you ever wondered where unused clothing goes after it is thrown away? Or how much a single item of clothing can actually affect the environment? 


Sadly, 92 million tonnes out of 10 million tons of textiles that have been produced ended up in the landfill. If the number continuously grows each year, it is expected to reach 134 million tonnes of fashion waste by the end of the decade. Another shocking fact is that The Fashion industry is responsible for 20% of the global wastewater. It is all caused by the chemicals that are applied to the fabrics during the dyeing and finishing process. It also affects 3% of global CO2 emissions. These two steps (dyeing and finishing) have the highest impact on the environment because of the energy that they use from fossil fuel energy. 


The European Environment Agency also stated that In 2020, textile consumption per person in the EU was equivalent to 400 m2 of land, 391 kg of raw material, and 9m3. They also stated that all of these numbers caused a 270 kg carbon footprint. 

Then, how can it affect the environment?


Water pollution

A single load of polyester clothing can release 700,000 microplastic fibers, which can end up in the food chain. The majority of microplastics found in textiles are released during the first few washes. Fast fashion is based on mass production, low prices, and high sales volumes, which encourages frequent first washes.


Greenhouse gas emissions

The fashion industry is estimated to be responsible for 10% of global carbon emissions, more than international flights and maritime shipping combined. According to the European Environment Agency, textile purchases in the EU in 2020 emitted approximately 270 kg of CO2 per person. The amount of textile products consumed in the EU produced 121 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions.


Another surprising fact about fashion waste is that only 1% of used clothes are recycled into new clothing. Meanwhile, textile production continues to increase year after year. 


Things that can help reduce the fashion waste:

  1. Reuse. 

Increase the number of times you wear your clothes. Studies have shown that the most effective way to reduce your environmental footprint in the fashion world is to wear your clothes until they wear out.

  1. Rent Clothes

Rather than buying clothes and wearing them only once, you can now rent them for your special occasion, and the best part is that you can try on a variety of new models, so you won't have to throw away any clothing.

  1. Quality over quantity 

Buy fewer items but invest in high-quality, timeless pieces. Avoid buying into 'trends' - resist the urge to buy an endless supply of clothes and instead seek out high-quality, classic pieces that you adore and will wear repeatedly.


Sources

  1. https://www.europarl.europa.eu/topics/en/article/20201208STO93327/the-impact-of-textile-production-and-waste-on-the-environment-infographics

  2. https://www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/fast-fashion-how-to-be-sustainable/?gad_source=1&gclid=CjwKCAjw0YGyBhByEiwAQmBEWuVqVd5mGfdLI9C9nT2UpAW9GfEgUUXWAzPVmpuMGrYgWnyWR8OMCxoCyJoQAvD_BwE

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