Stop Poisoning Waterways and Worsening Climate Change for Cheap Clothes

Target: Joseph R. Biden, President of the United States

Goal: Demand stricter regulations for the fast-fashion industry to reduce the environmental impact of mass manufacturing methods.

Fast-fashion–the mass production of clothing at significantly reduced costs–has been a growing industry in recent years. While the idea seems like the perfect way for consumers to reconcile high fashion aesthetics with low costs, in practice, fast-fashion does a lot more harm than good. In addition to exploitation of laborers—who get paid insignificant salaries for long hours of sometimes dangerous work—fast-fashion is one of the largest contributors to environmental pollution, right up there next to the agricultural industry.

Each year, tons of inexpensive, toxic textile dyes end up dumped in lakes and rivers, contaminating vital waterways that people and animals rely on for food. Residents of Bangladesh—the world’s second-biggest garment exporter—claim that waters surrounding major garment production towns are pitch black and have no signs of fish or other aquatic animal life. Employees are typically unprotected from these toxins, and work closely with dangerous chemicals without proper attire or regulation.

The production of cheap fabrics for use in fast-fashion requires the release of extensive amounts of fossil fuels. For example, polyester requires nearly 3 times more carbon dioxide than other, more natural fabrics. When washed, synthetic garments release micro plastics, which end up in waterways and never biodegrade. Here, these micro plastics are easily consumed by marine animals–and, by extension, humans–where the accumulation can have negative health repercussions.

Sign this petition to demand that stricter regulations be enforced pertaining to the fast-fashion industry’s contribution to global pollution.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear President Biden,

The fast-fashion industry has devastating effects on our environment. Each and every year, tens of thousands of tons of toxic dyes are dumped into lakes and rivers, contaminating vital sources of food and water for local communities and destroying aquatic biodiversity. The fast-fashion industry is also one of the lead contributors to fossil fuel emissions, and the mass production of cheap fabrics–like polyester–requires significantly more carbon dioxide than that of most other, more natural textiles. These synthetic fabrics are also responsible for the release of microplastics into the environment, which accumulate in marine animals and lead to serious health complications or, in some cases, death.

We are asking you, Mr. Biden, to follow through with your climate change initiatives and demand more regulations be put in place for this environmentally troubling industry.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Prachatai


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