National Thrift Store Day highlights a bigger meaning: The millions of pounds of clothing sitting in landfills

Another significant environmental impact is that creating one pair of jeans uses 998 gallons of water
Published: Aug. 17, 2022 at 6:56 PM CDT
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WACO, Texas (KWTX) - The amount of waste that comes from the cycle of keeping up with fashion trends and dumping the old for the new is constantly growing.

In today’s era of fast fashion and constantly changing trends, fashion is here one day and gone the next.

Instead of making it to a thrift store, millions of pounds of clothing end up in a landfill, further polluting our environment.

National thrift store day is a time for people to snatch deals and bargain for gently used clothing and anything else that may be at your local thrift.

It’s also a good time to bring awareness to the environmental harm being caused by the fashion industry.

“There’s an estimate that for every 1 pound of consumer individual waste, 40 pounds of waste were already created upstream to get to than 1 pound,” said Camille Tagle, with FabScrap.

Donating your used clothing to a thrift store is a viable way to support those in your community while ensuring you’re not contributing to the growing amount of clothing scraps in the landfill.

When you buy from The Salvation Army thrift store, they put that money directly back into the community.

Benefiting homeless shelters, food pantries and community wide giveback efforts are just some of the things this store does to benefit those in the community.

“Those goods aren’t just being thrown away and taken to a landfill. There’s a good chance the donated items will be purchased by somebody and taken to their home,” said Major Jim Taylor with The Salvation Army.

Fast fashion brands are also a huge contributor to the growing pounds of clothing in a landfill.

“Seeing the process and not being familiar with all of the steps… It’s easier for consumers to not consider those impacts,” said Tagle.

These brands attempt to capitalize off of a trend by producing the item very fast for very cheap and in a large quantity and once the trend is outdated, the items are thrown away.

Take this into consideration that one pair of jeans uses 998 gallons of water.

If we can save this water by recycling our jeans think about the environmental impact that can have.

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