Since much of the clothing we buy today is manufactured inanother country, it seems that clothing would not matter to DFW.
But it certainly does.
Where we buy it, how we clean it, and where and how we disposeof it has an immediate effect on DFW and North Central Texas. In some cases, weare using resources of the planet which has an eventual effect on us.
Nowhere does this quoteof Dr. Clive Splash, an ecological economist, seem more appropriate than when itapplies to clothing, "People buy things they don’t need, with money they don’t have, to impress people they don’t like."
Much of the clothing we wear ishighly toxic to the planet and all of its inhabitants. Yet how much do we knowabout this? And even if we have vague knowledge of it, how many times do wethink of this when we buy clothing?
Let’s look at the problems then someof the solutions, such as voting with your dollar!
Cotton is one of the most pesticideintensive crops grown worldwide. When we buy cotton clothing or other cotton products,we support (vote for) a highly toxic crop. Cotton uses more than 25% of all the insecticides in the world and 12% of all the pesticides. Cotton growers use 25% of all the pesticides used in the US. Yet cotton is farmed on only 3% of the world¹s farmland.More about cotton. Uses for cotton.
Nylon is made from petrochemicalsand its manufacture produces nitrous oxide. Since it is not biodegradable, ournylon jackets don’t wear out but they do stay in the landfill forever.
Polyester is also made frompetrochemicals and uses immense amounts of fresh water to cool it. Also not biodegradable. sothose out of style polyester clothes are also in the landfillforever.
Tanning leather requires a host oftoxic chemicals that pollute air & water as well endangering health.
Although most of us don’t buymany gold or silver items, mining precious metals uses toxic chemicals (cyanide,mercury) to leach the metals out of rock and these chemicals then pollute waterand farmland.
Once the fabric is finished, it isusually bleached and dyed, often with chemicals that cause cancer and polluteour waterways. "Permanent Press" is often treated with formaldehyde,another carcinogen we do not want in our waterways.
Natural fabricsare better, of course, but not always, such as the case of cotton. Uses for cotton
Even keeping our clothes clean canbe hard on air, water, and the health of the planet’s inhabitants, particularlydry cleaning. Dry cleaning uses perchlorotehylene which has been linked tomiscarriages, male infertility, cancer, and reproduction problems. If that isnot bad enough, it has been linked to disorders of the central nervous system.Drycleaners use almost 60 million pounds of this chemical each year, releasingat least 12 million pounds into the atmosphere. We bring the chemical home, hangit in our closets, and expose ourselves and our families to all the potentialharms of perchloroethylene also known as perc.
You can also use detergents forwashing clothes that are pollutants, of course.
So, will DFW and North Central Texas need to become one bignudist colony with a few of us covered in dirty clothing?
Not when we have organic fabrics andclothing or home furnishings designers who use them.
Note: The opinions expressedherein are exclusively those of the writers or other participants and do not necessarily reflect theposition of CyberParent, LLC. They are not intended to take the place of, or the advice of, ahealth, legal, or other professional whose expertise you might need to seek.