Green Tip #19: Don’t Throw Away Clothing

The Presbyterian Church USA actively encourages all congregations to be good stewards of all our God-given flora, fauna, and natural resources. St Andrew is actively pursuing an Earth Care Congregation designation by the PCUSA, with your help, this is an achievable goal for 2021.


Good News: A Green Group has bought a Belize forest to protect it in perpetuity.


Green Tip #19: Did you know that more than 15 million tons of textile waste goes into US landfills each year? [source: EPA] According to the Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles Association (SMART), nearly 100% of all used clothing and household textiles can be re-used or recycled: 45% are re-used as apparel; 30% are converted into industrial polishing/wiping cloths and 20% are processed into fiber to be manufactured into new products. 95% of all used clothing is recyclable, only 5% is unusable due to mildew or other contamination.


Don’t throw away any clothing, donate all clothing, even stained and torn clothing. Most donated items that are not saleable as clothing get recycled as rags or repurposed into other useful products. Strongly consider only buying natural fibers which are much more reusable and break down more easily.


There are an increasing number of companies who are now accepting and recycling their products including: Patagonia, North Face, Eileen Fisher, Ann Taylor, H&M, and Nordstroms. 


Above and Beyond: buy your clothes at consignment or thrift shops and simply buy fewer clothes.