People within the United States create a considerable amount of clothing and textile waste. According to recent research, this amounts to 12 million tons per year. Unfortunately, approximately 10.5 million tons of these textiles wind up in the country’s landfills. This situation could be remedied through recycling or otherwise repurposing these textiles.
Recycling Rates for Textiles
The Council for Textile Recycling reported that about 25 billion pounds of new textiles are created every year. On average, each American will throw away 82 pounds of textiles, which includes clothing and household items. Even though the remaining 15% is recycled or donated, this still points to textiles having one of the lowest recycling rates.
How Clothing Donations Fund Charitable Organizations
Secondhand stores, such as the Goodwill and Salvation Army, will receive 15% of textiles in the form of charitable donations. The average American will usually purchase ten pounds of clothing from these types of stores. Charitable organizations use 80% of the clothing donated to them to assist those in need, such as military families. The proceeds from these sales are also used for operational funding.
Recycling and Repurposing Used Clothing
About two million tons of used clothing is recycled every year. While less than half of this clothing will be worn again, the remainder can be repurposed. After being cut up, 30% of this used clothing is made into Industrial rags. The remaining 20% is shredded up to use for couch stuffing and home insulation.
How to Make Charitable Clothing Donations
It’s important to note that 95.4% of Americans engage in some type of charitable giving. This includes making financial contributions as well as donating their time and expertise. When you make charitable donations of clothing and household items to veterans charities, it assists military families and others in need. Furthermore, your donations will also keep these items out of the country’s landfills, which is beneficial to the environment.
Once you have collected your clothing donations, they can be taken to a local GreenDrop site. Your donations can also be conveniently picked up at your home. If you belong to an organization that holds clothing drives, your donation can also be picked up there.