My Sustainability Journey pt 3

From the beginning of this class till now, I am continually learning about sustainability and the issue with the fashion industry’s copious amount of waste. I am constantly shocked by how much of a negative impact our industry has on the environment. Something I came across that shocked me the most was that Americans will toss out 81 pounds of clothing this year, and companies will toss 26 BILLION pounds of textiles and clothes into landfills this year. The fact that these numbers are in the millions and billions is something that hurts my heart. All of these items can be revamped and up or down-cycled to recreate something new and decrease our footprint. I have learned that there are companies out there really trying to make an impact. For example, Levi’s has created processes which are reducing water up to 80%. Companies like these are really making an effort to stop this issue from getting worse. I really hope companies take part in this and it turns into a chain reaction. If we have that chain reaction then we can change the future of the earth and prevent our footprint from growing more than it already has. Being a merchandising major and reading about these issues, I am feeling inspired. It makes me want to get up and make a change. I know all it takes is one person, and I am definitely intrigued by sustainability in merchandising and apparel production. I think this influence has come from this class. Before this class I did not know that this was such an issue, and every class my knowledge has just grow deeper. We have learned so much about our footprint, but also about what we can do to make a change, and I think it is all very interesting.

The TED talk we watched last week was very interesting. The debate on paper verses plastic was very intriguing, I was shocked that plastic was better than paper. Paper is significantly bulkier, and takes about 40 years to biodegrade. Prior to watching that video I had the pre-conception that paper was better. I think I was fooled by the fact that paper comes from trees so I just thought it would biodegrade really fast, but my thoughts were quite off, but in the end bringing your own bags to the grocery store is the best option. I completely agreed with the talk when they said as humans we need to learn how to do more with less. I think often times we think we always need more, more, more, but in reality if we reuse what is already here and use less we are way better off. This TED talk made me more aware of the environment and our landfills. I had no idea landfills didn’t have oxygen. Overall it was very informative and interesting and beneficial for my sustainability journey.

It is very sad to think about, but is true, poverty is a root cause in environmental issues. The poor are forced to live with our waste which creates environmental issues. They need to be taught how to live more sustainable to help themselves and their communities. It is so sad because we are the cause for their issues because we put our waste in their homes and force them to live with it. We need policies that prevent this from happening so that these environmental issues can be reduced and the poor environments can grow to be better.

Biophilia is the love of life and the living world; the affinity of human beings for other life forms. This mind set increases sustainability and performance. It is this mindset that we are close and have connections with nature and other forms of life. This allows us to be close with worldly functions and how nature reacts. This mind set is what is allowing scientists to look into spiders and how they make their webs, and other earthly processes to implement it in industrial processes. Biophilia will increase sustainability and our relationship with nature. I find this topic so interesting, I think if we think more like the world then we will be one with it, verses against it.

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