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Fashion Hurts

Fashion Hurts

"We love the fashion industry, we just don't love what the fashion industry is doing to the environment." - Cora Hilts, Co-Founder Rêve En Vert.

Fashion is considered by many to be the world’s second most polluting industry in the world, topped only by oil. Clothing has a noticeably devastating impact on our environment, and that is the driving force behind Rêve En Vert (REV). Our mission will always be to support the designers who are committed to improving the standards of the fashion industry.

This editorial is dedicated to giving you the facts that you need and allowing you, as the consumer, to make an informed decision about what you are wearing.

Fashion pollution can be broken down into 3 key areas – chemical usage, carbon emissions, and water consumption and pollution.

Chemical Usage

Whether your clothes are made from a natural or synthetic fibre, chemicals will have been used throughout the production process. From crop pesticides and dyeing processes, to synthetic fibre manufacturing and treating processes, a staggering 25% of the worlds chemicals are used in textile production.

 

Treated clothing can offer a host of benefits. Quick drying sportwear, water-proof jackets and wrinkle-resistant shirts are undoubtedly useful. However, they also require numerous chemical treatments that are both damaging to the environment and your personal health.

 

These chemicals can have a devastating effect when released into our environment by disrupting the eco system balance, polluting our air and even contaminating our food.

Carbon Emissions

Carbon dioxide is a major greenhouse gas that is produced by burning fossil fuels like coal and oil. The build-up of greenhouse gasses is attributed to climate change, which causes melting ice caps, rising sea levels and intense heat waves.

 

In the fashion industry, the energy consumption from factory use, global shipping of garments and even textile waste creates a devastating effect on the environment. In one year, a single ship can produce the equivalent pollution of 50 million cars. With an estimated 90% of garments transported by container ship each year, that is a massive carbon footprint for the industry.

 

On top of that, around 350,000 tonnes of textile waste go to landfill each year. Decomposing clothes release methane, a primary cause of global warming.

Water Consumption & Pollution

Water is central to the manufacturing of fashion garments, from the access needed to cultivate cotton crops, to the dyeing and finishing processes at the factory. Water is a finite resource. While around 75% of the earth is covered in the blue stuff, only 1% is available for us to use. And when one single cotton tee can gulp up to 2700 litres of water, you can see how quickly consumption in the fashion industry starts to rise. The Aral Sea, once half the size of England has almost completely dried up in 25 years. The cause? Manmade diversion to boost cotton production.

Not only are we using too much water, but we are also polluting the stuff. After our clothes have bathed in dyes, all the waste water is dumped straight into nearby rivers. The problem with contaminated water is that it spreads, with the polluted water from the rivers reaching out into the oceans and beyond.

"Water is a finite resource. While around 75% of the earth is covered in the blue stuff, only 1% is available for us to use."

Clothing is probably the last thing you would have guessed would be damaging the environment. At first glance that simple cotton tee seems harmless, but dig a little deeper and the true cost is revealed. Each of our designers are hand selected for their vigorous sustaibility practices that reduce waste and promote healthy working conditions. At Rêve En Vert, we are committed to bettering an industry that is massively flawed. We want you to have access to beautiful, elegant designs that don’t cost the planet.

 

 

Now is your chance to join the sustainable fashion movement. Make a lasting impact by investing in REV here.

 

 

Want to delve deeper into the issue of fashion’s impact? We reccomend these articles:

 

Eco Watch – Fashion is the Second Dirtiest Industry in the World

 

Darling – Where Do Our Clothes Come From? A True Cost Q&A

 

Fashion & Mash – 10 scary truths about fast fashion’s impact on the environment