Textiles and the environment
Textile production is often a process with heavy environmental impact. Cotton requires irrigation and is often grown in arid countries where the production has a large impact on the local water supply. For instance, 1 pair of jeans consumes 8000 litres of water in its production. Petroleum based synthetic fibres such as polyester, emit large amounts of greenhouse gases and are not bio-degradable or sustainable as they are produced from a fossil fuel.
The demand for textiles has experienced a strong growth during the last decade and the world wide annual consumption has now reached approximately 73 million tons with an expected future growth rate of 3 % per year. The Swedish consumption of textiles has since year 2000 increased by 40 % and the yearly consumption now amounts to 130,000 tons per year.
Today, only a small amount of these textiles are re-used and an even smaller amount recycled. If 1kg of clothing were to be reused instead of produced from virgin sources, it would save 3,6kg carbon dioxide, 6000 litres of water and 0,3 kg of fertilising chemicals and 0,2kg of insecticides.
Through re:newcell's patented process, the environmental impact from the textile industry can be drastically reduced by recycling cellulosic based textiles, such as cotton, viscose etc.. The process will also reduce transport distances and reduce the volume of textile waste.
Sources: WWF.org, avfallsverige.se