Target: Xi Jinping, President of the People’s Republic of China
Goal: Address river pollution by investing in eco-friendly textile technologies
Dying clothes makes them beautiful, but at what cost? For China, the cost is paid by its’ rivers. According to an article in Yale’s Environment 360, 2.5 trillion liters of wastewater plagued with toxic chemicals, such as tributyltin (TBT), pentabromodiphenyl ether (PBDE), and aniline, are dumped into the rivers every year.
These chemicals have all been banned because they can cause cancer, hormone imbalances, and are extremely toxic to the water itself. Due to the textile industry as well as others, the water supply in China has become very polluted, causing major health concerns for people who rely on that water daily.
Thus, the Chinese government has dedicated over 300 billion dollars to cracking down on water pollution policies. However, there is doubt that these new policies will be enforced at the local level, which is necessary for any real change to happen.
The Chinese government also has an opportunity to invest in what could be a game changer. In addition to changing policies, there have been developments in waterless dyeing technologies, which could result in zero water pollution from textile producers. Companies like DyeCoo and ColorZen have developed technologies using renewable carbon dioxide and complex molecular composition restructuring, which use less energy, less chemicals, and cut production costs up to 50 percent.
Because these technologies are still in their infancy, there are still some challenges ahead, including expense and efficient transportation of the textiles to facilities where they can be treated with the new processes. However, the potential for change exists-it just needs to be researched, refined, and tested. More specifically than that, the cost of waterless dyeing machines needs to come down. Help us ask the president of China to make this happen by signing the petition below.
Dear President Jinping,
You have dedicated over 300 billion dollars to rehabilitating the rivers of China through policing the industries that cause the most water pollution.
In order for your money to be useful, it is also necessary to invest in technologies that could help reform some of China’s major polluters, like the textile industry.
Companies like DyeCoo and ColorZen have developed waterless dyeing technologies, which will eliminate all water waste. Since as of right now more than 40 percent of the world’s chemicals are produced by China, it is essential that you change the way these chemicals are produced for the sake of your citizens’ health as well as the well-being of the rivers.
Please create subsidies for companies that are willing to test out these new technologies. The cost needs to be lower for the machines if there is any hope at all for them achieving their potential.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Friviere via Wikimedia Commons