FAST FASHION AND CLIMATE JUSTICE
An Installation by Maggie Scott
The focus of this work is the climate emergency and the consequences for people in the global south.
The fast fashion industry produces 80 billion pieces of clothing each year and women in the Global North buy twice as many clothes as they did just fifteen years ago. A recent survey, found that British people will spend up to 2.7 billion pounds on clothes during the summer that’ll only be worn once.
Textiles are one of the fastest growing sources of waste globally. As our consumption increases our environmental impact in the form of waste also increases.
Fast fashion is a huge contributor to plastic pollution. We make 60% of our clothing from synthetic material. Every garment we produce with synthetic materials will remain on earth long after we dispose of it.
The clothing deficit myth keeps us thinking our used clothes are going to those in need. Kenya alone buys 22 million dollars annually in used clothes from western nations. But even here there’s not enough demand for our old clothes. Second-hand retailers in developing countries find that the clothing is low quality and hard to sell. So they end up in a landfill. Chemicals, dyes, and toxins in this textile waste seep into the earth. This results in the contamination of freshwater sources and soil.
If we continue to buy and discard clothes at current rates, the west’s unwanted garments will continue to pile up in landfill sites and waterways in the global south We will continue to shift the burden of waste disposal onto countries with the least capacity to deal with it.
We cannot export our way out of our Fast Fashion addiction