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Australia convenes roundtable to tackle discarded clothing

18
Feb '21
Pic: Shutterstock
Pic: Shutterstock
Australia is planning to tackle 800,000 tonnes of clothing and textiles discarded by its citizens every year, and recently announced a $350,000 investment in the Australasian Circular Textile Association (ACTA). Minister for environment Susan Ley said the government will host a national roundtable on the issue, bringing together representatives of retail, fashion, charity, production, research and waste management to curb the dumping of textiles.

“We all have to wear clothes but we are buying them at such a rate that we don’t know what to do with them when they are too old, too worn, or simply out of fashion,” Ley said.

“According to the ACTA, parents who have just been purchasing school uniforms and trades getting ready for the year ahead will contribute 12,000 tonnes of branded uniforms alone to landfill in the next 12 months,” she was quoted as saying by Australian media reports.

Kmart was the first retailer to put its hand up in support of the roundtable, along with the Australian Fashion Council.

The ACTA’s new initiative, Circular Threads, will investigate new technologies that will be used to separate and repurpose fabrics from used clothes, and create remanufacturing opportunities.

ACTA founder and CEO Camille Reed said the problem required a long-term solution, and for efforts to go even further to create a circular model.

“We need an industry led approach to find the ways we can break down clothing elements and re-use individual components and the fabrics themselves,” Reed said.

“There are some key technologies around the corner in terms of breaking down cotton and polyester blends and we need to be in a position to make the most of those opportunities,” she added.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)


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