Reduce your consumption of fast fashion to save the environment

Reduce your consumption of fast fashion to save the environment

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Avery Thomson started this petition to Individuals

Fast fashion is a rapidly growing industry that allows us to buy cheap, low-quality clothing. The hidden environmental effects of this industry are so substantial and detrimental there needs to be action taken now. 

Buying fast fashion products is a desirable shopping habit for many people in developed countries. It is a way to stay “on trend” while not breaking the bank. While it may be good for our wallets, the environment is taking a big hit for it. It poorly affects our air and water quality around the world but, there is a way we can help stop this vicious buying and polluting cycle. By researching the brands that we buy from and making sure they use environmentally sound practices and buying more locally we can help lessen the effects of the fashion industry on the environment. 


Not only does the amount of waste created when we are done with an item accumulate in landfills and in the oceans, but the pollution and waste in the production of the materials also adds up to be extreme amounts. 2,700 litres of clean water are needed to make one pair of jeans. That is the same amount of water that the average person drinks in two and a half years. That same pair of jeans would also emit into the air an equal amount of pollution that driving a car 130km would. The fashion industry is the second biggest consumer of water, producing 20 percent of wastewater in the world while also generating more greenhouse gas emissions than all international flights and maritime shipping combined at a time. 


The fast fashion industry relies heavily on polyester because of its low cost. Polyester is made from plastic. If our polyester clothing reaches the ocean, it adds to the plastic pollution and turns into microfibres that are then ingested by sea life. This plastic is seriously harming the sea life as they cannot digest it, causing them to die. In total, 70 million barrels of oil are used a year to make polyester. This is a huge amount of a resource that is already depleting so rapidly.


There have already been initiatives to try and reduce the amount of waste we create from clothing such as cities introducing textile recycling bins. Also, everyone is encouraged to donate to second hand stores if the clothing items are in good shape. The impact of the clothing industry is known, but these small actions are not quite enough.


So how do we as individuals stop this fast fashion crisis? Just a few simple steps can make our ecological footprint shrink. One is to stop buying cheap, disposable clothing and to stop buying so frequently. When we buy new clothes every month or two, we are contributing to the 80 billion garments that are consumed every year that later end up in landfills. We can also purchase products that are processed and made near us so the emissions from transportation aren’t as severe. Each and every one of us can make a contribution to lessen the effects of the fashion industry and it starts with you.

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