Dirty Laundry : Fashion’s Impact On Our Ocean – Huffington Post
While sustainable supply chain practices are important, the sheer mass of products produced in today’s market is itself unsustainable. Fast fashion and the rise of “disposable clothing” has led the average American to throw away 82 pounds of clothes each year. That measures 11 million tons of textile waste annually in the US alone. What’s worse, a large portion of this clothing is made from plastic (polyester, nylon, spandex…). These plastic fibers can take up to 200 years to degrade and are having an invisible, but deadly, effect on our oceans. Every time we do laundry tiny plastic fibers are released and at less than 1 millimeter in length, wastewater treatment plants can’t filter them. Just one pair of nylon socks can leave behind 136,000 plastic fibers. These tiny fibers are flooding our waterways and are 6 times more prevalent than plastic water bottles on the beach.