Recycled polyester clothing may appear to be a sustainable and Eco-friendly choice, but it has its own environmental impacts. The production of recycled polyester still requires a significant amount of energy. This is particularly in the recycling and processing of post-consumer materials which contributes to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change. Additionally, the recycling process for polyester may use chemicals and solvents that have harmful environmental impacts.
While recycled polyester production may use less water than virgin polyester production, it still requires significant amounts of water for the recycling process and dyeing and finishing the fabric. Moreover, like virgin polyester, recycled polyester is non-biodegradable and can contribute to environmental pollution if not disposed of properly.
The process of recycling polyester has very limited capabilities. Recycling it again is possible, but the second time around, the efficiency significantly decreases. This results in lower quality clothing that is less durable.
When washing recycled or non recycled polyester clothing it sheds millions of microfibers that end up in oceans, harming marine life and entering the food chain.
Although many people believe that recycled polyester is a step towards a more sustainable and circular fashion industry. It is unfortunately not. Instead, try to look for better options like sustainable and Eco-friendly clothing made from fabrics such as organic cotton, bamboo, Tencel and merino wool. Additionally, reducing overall consumption and choosing secondhand or vintage clothing can also have a positive impact on the environment. One good thing about natural fiber clothing is that is biodegradable, compostable and doesn’t have the harmful effects to our ocean life that synthetics do. Natural fiber clothing is generally more comfortable and better for our skin as well. Although nothing is 100% perfect, clothing made from natural organic materials are a much better choice.
This is our opinion on why why recycled polyester isn’t Eco-Friendly and for those who value our oceans, we feel you just may agree.
Photo by Kris-Mikael Krister
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