Random Acts of Greenness: Intact, Or Worn Out, Recycle That Fabric!

Layla's rescued shirt. (Photo courtesy of Susan Lewitt)

Help remove the equivalent pollution of 1,000,000 cars. Here’s how:

13.4 million tons of fabric go into landfills annually. As this decays, it gives off greenhouse gaseous odors. Do you remember leaving damp clothing in the washer and coming back days later to a horrific odor? Multiply that by tons taken to landfills and you begin to see the problem. Here’s the solution.

Many people look over their old clothing and toss out worn-out items. Instead, before discarding your damaged favorites, see if you can salvage the best parts and make something new. You would be surprised at how crafty you are when it comes to old favorites. Donate the scraps for recycling or reuse at places like the ‘New’ Children’s Museum in downtown San Diego.

Many donation centers take any condition fabrics. They sell the unsold and unwearable items to fabric recyclers. There are many benefits of recycling fabric. Much of our discards are wearable. Reusing is less stressful on our environment than manufacturing new garments and trashing old ones. Buying used items helps others with jobs. Donating helps those in need afford clothing. Donating and recycling fabrics keep hazardous waste, like dyes, chemicals and synthetic fibers, out of the landfill. This benefits our health by decreasing pollution given off by the breakdown of unsafe products.

There are more items to be recycled than you imagine. As with clothing and other items, think before you send it to the landfill and when making purchases. There are better solutions for many thrown out items, for more ideas visit, “How to Recycle Everything in Your Home” and Planet Aid.

Everything we do has an impact on each other and our world. Reusing, reducing, donating and salvaging especially when it comes to fabrics, are always better options for everyone’s health and well being.

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