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Fashion industries causing increased environmental pollution

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Chairman of United International Group Mian Shahid, said that the trend of fast fashion is developing globally which is a polluting environment, spreading toxins in water and encourages the use of different poisonous chemicals in agriculture.

He said, “Nowadays, more people are buying clothes due to increased disposable income and they don’t keep them as long as they used to which is resulting in pollution and other problems. The textile industry has become the second largest polluter after oil while little has been done to improve it or recycle textile waste.”

He further added that fashion has become a $3,000 billion industry that is almost two percent of the global gross domestic product (GDP). The industry produces 100 billion garments yearly of which 75 percent are marketed in developed countries. 3 percent of the cultivable land is being used to grow cotton however the ratio of pesticides and insecticide used for the yield is 35 percent. The textile industry generates around twenty-five million tons of waste yearly. 15 percent of fiber is wasted in the textile mills in which Pakistan’s share stands at 60 million kilograms (kgs).

He said that seventy percent of the world’s population wears second hand clothes and ninety-five percent of textiles can be reused but ninety-nine percent of it ends up in landfills. Some leading international brands would never reduce rates or donate but prefer to burn unsold stock which is unfortunate.

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