As concerns over global warming continues to increase in our society, websites such as Global Action Through Fashion (GATF) have focused their attention on the relationship between the fashion industry and these changes in our environment.
HURTFUL FROM THE BEGINNING
As outlined on the GATF website, the impact of $450 billion global fashion industry on the environment continues throughout the entire lifecycle of the garment. Cotton, for example, affects the environment even as it is being grown. Additionally, the production- such as dyeing, spinning, weaving, finishing, cutting, sewing, packaging, transport, and etc.- can use at least 8,000 toxic and/or corrosive chemicals. The included info-graphic shows the effects of cotton grown for garments on the environment- from its initial growth to becoming post-consumer waste.
According to GATF, as of 2007, one half of one percent of the $450 billion dollar fashion industry, or $3 billion, is fair trade or environmentally sustainable. Therefore, the products that are made are often produced using the unclean and environmentally damaging materials discussed above. GATF sums up its concern, “Lack of consumer awareness and insufficient industry know-how allow these problems to continue and worsen.”