Posted on June 30 2017
This world is going to shit unless we do something about it. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not the best at being green but I do believe that we all have versions of ourselves that we can aspire to be and work towards. I’m partly writing this guide to not only remind myself about my environmental footprint but also to inspire you to be more aware of what your actions are doing to our planet.
So let’s get started. I’m going to drop some bombs on you guys.
“Fast fashion is the second dirtiest industry in the world, next to big oil” - Glynis Sweeny from an article by Eco Watch.
In case you didn’t process that, I’m going to say it again.
“FAST FASHION IS THE SECOND DIRTIEST INDUSTRY IN THE WORLD”
Holy shit? Second?That’s dirtier than a dirty sanchez.
Perhaps you were thinking that it would be from the food and beverage industry, chemical industry, or even from the electronics industry. But no, it’s from the clothing industry.
So what is fast fashion?
It’s a term to describe retailers who quickly take fashion trends from the runway and then bring it to stores. Clothing from these stores are fast, cheap, and are meant to be worn only a handful of times. Because these retailers are able to churn out new clothes like diarrhea, people are constantly buying more clothes that they don't need and are constantly dumping out their “old” clothes.
How Bad Is It?
Alright, here is another stat that I read from an article by Greenpeace called “Timeout For Fast Fashion”
“Global trade in used clothing reaches 4.3 million tonnes, many are unlikely to be worn again” - Greenpeace
To put that into perspective, that’s more than 450,000 T-Rex’s. Can you even imagine that? Because I sure can’t and I have a pretty good imagination. It's incredible that much of the clothing that gets wasted is perfectly good to wear again.
What You Can Do
Too bad we can’t just all walk around like naked neanderthals right? That’ll solve part of this clothing epidemic. Fortunately, there are little things that we can all do to make a big impact. One person can’t make a huge impact on their own, but together as a whole, we can solve most of our problems.
Use reusable bags and containers.
Ditch the plastic bags and bring your own. Bring your own bottles to fill up coffee and bring your own lunch containers if you’re going to get take out so that you don’t need to deal with all of that packaging. There are also grocery-like stores all around Vancouver such as the zero-waste market where you can get all of your food, shampoos, and other house hold goods.
Fix things and don’t just throw them away.
Just because you have a little tear in your pants doesn’t mean that you need to throw it away. First, try fixing it yourself or if you’re not confident with that, bring it to someone who can fix it.
Many of us are losing the ability to fix things ourselves. My friend’s fathers are great handymen but they themselves suck at fixing things. More and more people are becoming less “handy”. Many things aren’t hard to fix, you just need to put in a little elbow grease and time.
Buy high quality things that will last a long time.
“Doubling the useful life of clothing from one year to two years reduces emissions over the year by 24%” - Greenpeace
“Cough” buy from DV Clothiers. Ahaha I’m not even joking. I’m confident to say our shit is high quality and is made to last. Aside from that, the next time you make a new purchase, remember that you don’t always need an upgrade. You don’t need the latest iPhone, the most up-to date outfit, or the next super cool shiny thing,
Use transit or green modes of transportation.
We all know that driving downtown sucks. The parking is expensive, it’s congested, and it can be a huge pain in the ass during rush hour. Sometimes taking the train is faster. If you’re a true champion, you can cycle too! The city has tonnes of infrastructure built for cycling and if the place you need to go is within 3 km, it might be even faster to cycle. Besides, you will build up a nice butt that the ladies will love.
These are only a few of the many things that you can do to reduce your waste. When it comes down to it, it’s all about being mindful about everything that you are doing. You know how as you get older, you need to be more sensitive about your diet so that you don’t die? Well this is similar to how we should treat our consumption. Our waste doesn’t just disappear. When we throw it away, it’s going to end up somewhere and someone else will have to deal with it.
Being greener is a struggle for me too, but it’s easier if we all do it together. What do you you think you can do to waste less? I would love to know. Leave a comment down below or share our wisdom with your friends!