Why Inexpensive Clothes Can Have High Environmental Costs (Via KJZZ)

Elizabeth Clinerecently talked with Mark Brodie from KJZZ, NPR member radio station out of Phoenix, on “Why Inexpensive Clothes Can Have High Environmental Costs.”

While Mark notes that it’s gotten easier and cheaper to buy clothes over the past several years, as “fast fashion” has become more prevalent, we have a discussion on just why the lower prices keep getting lower and the ethical and environmental consequences from our shopping choices.

Consider this: The impact of the fashion industry has gone up along with the number of purchases the average shopper makes yearly, and so too has the amount of waste and unwanted clothes. The U.S. EPA conservatively estimates that textile waste occupies over 6% of all landfill space and growing, which makes sense when we factor in the average U.S. citizen throws away 70 pounds of clothing annually.

We need to develop true textile recycling technologies to create new fibers, and 2018 could be the year that some of them become commercially viable.

We have a lot of work to do.

Listen to my interview with Mark here.