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The cost of clothing

Pop along to the EcoCentre today between 11am and 6pm and for a gold coin you can take part in our Clothes Swap and take away a new wardrobe of clothing! We’ve got free refreshments too in case anyone needs a nibble whilst they decide.

So why have a clothes swap at the EcoCentre? You may have seen this image doing the rounds on Facebook

2nd hand clothing 1millionwomen

I’ve been buying the vast majority of my clothes second hand for years for various reasons, this being one of them. Not only does it save carbon emissions, but also cotton production is very water intensive. Because of my psoriasis I’ve worn mainly natural fibres most of my adult life, which means a LOT of cotton… I knew it needed an obscene amount of water, but still hadn’t realised just how much until I saw this video clip

We NEED water to drink to survive, we don’t need new clothes at the rate at which they are produced and we’re encouraged to buy them. Given the limited amount of potable water in some of the very regions where cotton is grown surely we need to be reconsidering our consumer habits in such a way that is less of a burden in terms of water usage. Especially with the added effects of climate change complicating the picture even further.

Artificial fabrics is a whole different ball game, especially those derived from petrochemicals which leach plastic microfibres in the wash. There are fabrics made from bamboo, wood pulp & cotton lint (viscose) and other cellulose (rayon), which may have a better water footprint, I don’t know (cotton lint obviously not!), but there are substantial amounts of energy used to produce them, and I know the jury is out on bamboo at least as to whether it really is more environmentally friendly.

Kaitāia has a large number of op shops and of course there are Facebook buy/sell groups and TradeMe which are great places to buy secondhand clothing. And of course you can swap stuff with your mates.

So why not grab yourself a change of wardrobe without contributing to Climate Change whilst you’re at it!

by Anna Dunford

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