Earth911 is honoring 52 years of Earth Day with 52 Earth Events. Each week during Earth Day 2023, we’ll share an action you can take to invest in the Earth and make your own life more sustainable. The environmental impact of the global textile and fashion industry is so great that EarthDay.org has made sustainable fashion one of its main campaigns. While fashion magazines are full of quizzes to help you figure out your personal style, EarthDay.org’s quiz will help you better understand the environmental impact of the fashion industry and help you avoid the wrong kind of fashion influence. This week, you can take action for the Earth by testing—and expanding—your knowledge of (environmental) fashion.
Fashion for the Earth
The history of Earth Day is a history of collective action by individuals. But over time, organizers realized that while individual action was necessary to stop climate change, it would not be enough unless industry and governments also committed to investing in the Earth to create a green economy. It is not easy to imagine how government, business and consumers can work together to transform a polluting industry into a green economy model. EarthDay.org chose the fashion industry as an example of the possibilities for change and a place to start making a difference. The Fashion for the Earth campaign is designed to change the way people think about shopping and encourage clothing companies to adopt more sustainable practices.
Effects of fashion
Regular readers of Earth911 are already familiar with some of the environmental impacts of the fashion industry and the many strategies for making fashion sustainable. We learned how to choose eco-friendly fabrics and considered the environmental trade-offs of different natural fibers, different synthetics, and even leather and leather alternatives. All these materials have a significant impact on the environment at all stages of their life cycle. Agricultural and industrial pollution is created during textile production. Human rights and labor are violated during the production of clothes. Laundry results in chemical pollution and microplastic pollution. And thanks to fast fashion, both the retail and consumer stages waste vast amounts of textiles and clothing, resulting in mountains of textile waste.
Take the quiz
If you want to get your fill, read the Get the Facts section of EarthDay.org’s sustainable fashion page. But if you don’t feel like studying, never fear. The quiz reveals each correct answer as you go and adds up your score at the end.
After taking the Sustainable Fashion Quiz, you may be inspired to do something more. You can take immediate action by signing the sustainable fashion petition. You can go even further by making your own wardrobe more sustainable and learning how to quit fast fashion for good. Before you clean out your closet and organize a clothing swap to recycle clothes you don’t wear, read about retailer take-back programs. Maybe you’ll create a capsule wardrobe to eliminate impulse shopping, or learn more sustainable laundry methods and dry cleaning options. You can learn how to mend to extend the life of your clothes and turn worn clothes into napkins.