The fast pace and nature of fast fashion has a big impact on climate change. If clothing consumption stays that way, fashion will be responsible for 25% of climate change by 2050, doing nothing is not an option.
5 ways fashion affects climate change and how we can change it:
- Plastic fibers affect marine life - according to The Guardian, 85% of human-made litter found in the ocean comes from clothing. Fabrics like polyester are made from plastic and when washed send plastic microfibers into the ocean. We must stop consuming polyester articles.
- Fashion has a giant ecological footprint - a t-shirt leaves a carbon footprint of 6kg, 20 times its weight. It is estimated to be 1.074 billion KWh for the annual textile production of 60 billion kg of fabrics. A lot of this comes from our clothes traveling around the world. So prioritize local brands.
- Pesticides poison the planet - conventional cotton production is considered one of the dirtiest. It only covers 2.4% of the land but uses 6% of pesticides and 16% of insecticides. This has a disastrous effect on the planet, as it penetrates the soil and contaminates the water. Choose sustainable fibers like organic cotton.
- Garbage is clogging up the land - fashion overproduction is rampant, H&M sends millions of dollars to the garbage every year for unworn clothes. We're okay buying 400% more clothes than we did 20 years ago. To prevent this we have to buy less, better and wear our clothes more.
- Fashion's impact on the environment comes from our home - 75% comes from doing laundry. Therefore, washing our clothes less means reducing the impact, washing with colder water also has its impact, as 4 or 5 washing machines in cold water represent a cut of 32.5 kg in CO2 emissions per month.