According to the report “Valuing Our Clothes: the cost of UK Fashion” over 300 000 tonnes of clothing was dumped in landfill sites across the United Kingdom in 2016 and who knows how long some of those synthetic fabrics are going to take before they decompose. Our love of fast fashion means that we are buying more and more cheap clothes and think nothing about dumping them when they become faulty or unfashionable.
The report also estimated that 30 billion pounds worth of unworn clothing is stuffed into wardrobes across the country. According to Greenpeace, it’s not just the waste going to landfill that causes problems; the textile industry itself creates horrendous pollution problems. Often toxic chemicals are released into the atmosphere and precious water supplies are poisoned as chemicals leach into them. In many countries where water is such a precious commodity, water supplies are stressed due to the amount of water needed to grow and produce cotton fibre. The greenhouse gases created by the coal-fired factory plants just add to problem. The textile industry is widely regarded as one of the most polluting industries. It creates more CO2 emissions than international flights. Yet we keep on buying and dumping clothes.
According to a Sainsbury’s survey, Spring is the main time when people start clearing their wardrobes and buying new clothing. Add to this the current interest in minimalism and decluttering with the likes of Japanese expert, Marie Kondo, encouraging people to tidy their homes by category, starting with clothing, it’s no wonder people are contacting rubbish removal services more frequently.
What Can I Do About It?
There many ways we can all help to stop this fabric mountain from growing. Here are a few things you can do before booking that rubbish removal service.
Try following the 5 R’s of recycling:
Refuse to be suckered into buying what you don’t really need. Your finances will thank you for this one.
actively reduce the amount of clothes you buy. Make every purchase count and look for value. Make sure each item lasts longer than one season. Fix that button or hem. According to the report on Valuing our Clothes, keeping clothes just 9 months longer will cut 20-30% from the country’s annual water, waste and carbon footprint for clothing.
Revisits your wardrobe. What outfits can you accessorize or wear differently? What about checking out the Charity Shops rather than buying brand new every time. There are some beautiful pieces of vintage clothing out there that can be brought up to date or worn with individual flair. How about a clothes swap party with your friends?
It’s not as hard as you think to turn an old skirt into an apron, to make a scarf from some gorgeous fabric or get the kids to create some doll’s clothes Even the most creatively challenged can cut up clothes for rags or the dog’s basket.
Don’t just dump it, maybe you can sell some items or donate them to a charity shop.
Of course, there are occasions when time or circumstances require a speedy solution to clearing a house and rubbish removal. If you do need to contact a rubbish removal service, look for one that is environmentally friendly. Clearabee’s rubbish removal service directs 90% of the rubbish they collect away from landfill by using local knowledge and expertise of recycling options. They care about the environment. Clearabee understands that we need to have a “fashion conscience” if we continue to be so fashion conscious.