Despite inspirational efforts being made across the top fashion brands, we are consuming more clothing, using it for nearly half as long and still filling up our Earth with unwanted and unused clothing and textiles. The existing solution we can utilize in our day-to-day lives and business practices is reuse.
It’s been three years since we started Rethink Reuse™ at Savers®. Since then, we’ve seen great progress by brands in the fashion industry. From Eileen Fisher’s Circular by Designcommitments to adidas’ shoes and apparel made out of ocean plastic — brands are not only recognizing the negative impact clothing has on our planet but are also taking meaningful action to address the issue in front of us.
Yet, consumers can be a bigger part of the solution.
Despite the inspirational efforts being made across the top fashion brands, the waste problem has not improved. We are consuming more items, using them for nearly half as long and still filling up our Earth with unwanted and unused clothing and textiles.
Stella McCartney has reported that the average number of times a garment is worn before it gets thrown out has decreased by 36 percent over the last 15 years. And even more alarming is the fact that 60 percent of clothing is landfilled or incinerated within a year of being made, according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.
And while I’ve emphasized this in the past, I can’t help but drill it down: Each North American throws away approximately 81 pounds of clothing and textiles annually, totaling 26 billion pounds going into our landfills — 95 percent of which can be reused or recycled. (…)
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