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posted by chromas on Wednesday June 03 2020, @02:02AM   Printer-friendly
from the life-in-plastic,-it's-fantastic dept.

'Plastic-free' fashion is not as clean or green as it seems:

We have all become more aware of the environmental impact of our clothing choices. The fashion industry has seen a rise in "green," "eco" and "sustainable" clothing. This includes an increase in the use of natural fibres, such as wool, hemp, and cotton, as synthetic fabrics, like polyester, acrylic and nylon, have been vilified by some.

However, the push to go "natural" obscures a more complex picture.

Natural fibres in fashion garments are products of multiple transformation processes, most of which are reliant on intensive manufacturing as well as advanced chemical manipulation.

While they are presumed to biodegrade, the extent to which they do has been contested by a handful of studies. Natural fibres can be preserved over centuries and even millennia in certain environments. Where fibres are found to degrade they may release chemicals, for example from dyes, into the environment.

Perhaps the real threat to the environment is over-consumption.

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  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @07:51AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 03 2020, @07:51AM (#1002646)

    It seems like a long bow to suggest we should stop buying cotton because of the ecological disaster that is the Aral dustbowl.

    The ecological disaster is what we make of it, because it needs to be cheap. You can grow cotton that isn't an ecological disaster if you count in all th external costs (which are now being paid by mother nature), it will be much more expensive (both financially and labour wise)... but at least you don't harm the environment.

    A lot of things would be much different if those external costs wouldn't be diverted to the environment. I doubt those researchers included the clean up costs of all those plastic fabrics and microplastics that they shed.

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