The fashion week tents have been packed up and the models sent home until the next collection debuts, but one deeply entrenched industry trend shows no sign of stopping: Fast fashion, which has become one of the biggest sources of pollution in the world.
According to a recent report, the textile industry emits more greenhouse gas emissions than international shipping and aviation combined. And the amount of waste the industry generates, as well as how much water and resources it uses, is increasing.
Since 2000, global clothes production has more than doubled, and the average person now buys 60 percent more items of clothing every year and keeps them for about half as long as they did 15 years ago. In the USA, over 85 percent of those clothes end up in a landfill.
China, which produces 50 percent of the world’s textiles, and imports the largest amount of recycled clothing, has been dealing with pollution from the industry for decades: Most recycled clothing from around the world is up routed there and turned into yarn. But starting this year, China will begin implementing a ban on the import of 24 solid materials, including textiles.