Cuál es la huella hídrica de la industria de la moda

What is the water footprint of the fashion industry?

Cuál es la huella hídrica de la industria de la moda

The water footprint (HH) is a term used to indicate the volume of water used for various processes carried out to produce goods and services , whether from a person, community or company. Then, the water footprint is considered as an environmental meter and which can be used to know almost all the processes that make use of this resource.

In the fashion industry, this indicator has made it possible to know the waste of water generated in the massive production of clothing, where alarming figures have been revealed by the United Nations, who exposed at the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), that it takes 7,500 liters of water to manufacture a single pair of jeans.

The level of water consumption by the textile industry is such that it ranks as the second most polluting in the world, with the oil industry being the first. This level of contamination is due, for the most part, to the current consumer trend of 'fast fashion', which consists of producing low-quality seasonal garments.

Consequently, fast fashion promotes irresponsible consumption where people buy seldom-used garments, whose materials can become more polluting and represent a greater expenditure of natural resources in their manufacture. In addition, these textiles tend to release thousands of microplastics with each wash, which end up in the oceans, adding damage to vegetation and animals.

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The water footprint of the fashion industry

The water footprint of the textile industry is due, essentially, to the manufacturing processes, which include everything from cotton crops and trees from which their bark is taken to make fabrics to the treatment of inputs such as cleaning and dyeing. It is estimated that these last two processes use and pollute up to 20% of the world's water.

In the Water Footprint report, the seriousness of the water consumption represented by crops for textiles is exposed, with cotton being the one that represents the greatest expense, since its production is responsible for 2.6% of the expenditure of this resource worldwide. This means that to produce a kilo of this material, 10,000 liters of water are required.

On the other hand, the water polluted by this industry ends up with residues of highly toxic chemicals such as alkylphenols, phthalates, chlorobenzenes and chlorophenols, producing salts, heavy metals and dyes that add to the problem plaguing marine ecosystems .

Water consumption does not stop in the production process, because once we buy a garment the cost continues with each wash, leaving behind other polluting particles that end up in water sources, such as case of microplastics. It is estimated that washing one person's clothes every day represents a cost of 285 liters of water.

Added all the variables of the fashion industry in terms of water consumption, it is estimated that 93,000 cubic meters of this resource are used annually. According to studies, this amount is equivalent to the consumption of some 5,000 million people, which shows an environmental problem.

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How to reduce the water footprint?

Being aware of the problem represented by the mass production of clothing is the first step to start looking for sustainable alternatives that contribute to reducing the environmental impact.Given the current conditions and the growing interest in responsible consumption, it is possible to find various options of ecological clothing that adjust to the needs and demands of people who day every day they seek to contribute to change

The products that are produced under the philosophy of sustainable fashion are presented as the ideal alternative that many seek with the intention of being a responsible consumer, since it incorporates ecological production models in which the consumption of natural resources is reduced and recycling methods are adopted to reuse inputs such as PET and recovered cotton.

Currently you can find several sustainable clothing brands in Colombia with which you can support the national economy while contributing to caring for the environment ambient. Mother Earth is one of them, where you can find garments with innovative design and whose materials and production processes are responsible.

Go ahead and visit our catalog and join the change that the planet needs.

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