Have you ever thought about the impact your closet has on our environment? Sustainability has become a hot topic in the fashion industry in recent years. People are buying more clothing items and wearing them less than ever before, creating an environmental crisis that needs to be addressed.
Here are some ways clothing can be harmful to the planet, and what you can do to help:
#1: Production and Manufacturing: The fashion industry uses a lot of resources, which creates pollution. The production of textiles requires vast amounts of water, energy, and chemicals. Purchasing fewer new clothing items – and thrifting instead – cuts down on the need for more manufacturing.
#2: Synthetic Fibers: Many modern fabrics, such as polyester, nylon, and acrylic, are derived from chemicals and are non-biodegradable. These synthetic fibers shed microplastics when they’re washed, which contributes to plastic pollution in oceans and freshwater systems.
You can avoid these effects by choosing high-quality pieces made of natural materials, many of which can be found at an Ohio Valley Goodwill thrift store!
#3: Waste and Landfill: Fast fashion and disposable clothing culture have led to a significant increase in textile waste. Many garments are discarded after minimal use, and the majority end up in landfills. Textiles take a long time to decompose, and as they break down, they release harmful greenhouse gases.
Good news: Donating unwanted clothing to Goodwill can cut down on landfill waste!
#4: Transportation and Carbon Footprint: The globalized nature of the fashion industry involves long-distance transportation of garments and raw materials, leading to high carbon emissions. The transportation of clothing from manufacturing sites to retail stores and consumers also contributes to the industry’s carbon footprint.
The alternative? Thrift at your neighborhood Goodwill store!
#5: Disposal: When you no longer want certain clothing items, how you dispose of them matters. Donating clothes to Goodwill allows them to be reused and prolongs their lifespan. If garments are no longer wearable, Goodwill handles recycling or upcycling options for you.
How Can You Make Your Wardrobe Earth-Friendly?
Be conscious of your clothing choices and, when possible, opt for eco-friendly alternatives. The Earth will thank you!
When you choose to shop at Goodwill and donate your gently-used items, you’ll also be supporting Goodwill’s mission to provide job skills training to individuals with disabilities and others facing barriers to employment.
With a few little changes, you can make a big difference for your neighbors and the planet!