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Green Initiatives Calls on Shanghai to End Textile Waste, Launches RE:FORM to Activate Eco-Responsible Fashion

By   /   March 3, 2017  /   No Comments

Shanghai, China – Green Initiatives has just launched RE:FORM—an all encompassing new program designed to educate consumers on the impact of today’s clothing consumption habits and how the public can help tackle it.

Launched in partnership with Community Center Shanghai and Crown Relocations, RE:FORM will serve as a platform for tackling textile waste across different points in the value chain, through information sharing, launch of creative campaigns to encourage individual action, engage with  corporations and schools to educate their staff and students, as well as provide a transparent, easy, and reliable way to reuse and recycle clothing purchases.

RE:FORM will be officially launched at Green Initiatives’ 71st film screening, Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things, on Thursday, February 16th 2017.

The Textile Waste Problem

China produces more than 26 million tons of textile waste every year (about 70,000 tons each day!), reportedly a 400% increase from 20 years ago. Greenpeace reports that three quarters end up in landfills after only a few uses, when in fact, 99% of discarded items could be recycled.

The production and disposal of textiles present a growing threat to the environment. For example, cotton accounts for more than half of all clothing produced worldwide, and accounts for 24% and 11% of the global insecticide and pesticide sales respectively [link]. When disposed, clothes release chemical dyes that contaminate soil while incineration contributes to air pollution. It also puts tremendous pressure on landfills.

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What is RE:FORM?

RE:FORM raises awareness on the environmental and social impact of clothing consumption. Public events, community campaigns, customized awareness workshops and other activities will be conducted to grow the conversation on eco-responsible textiles and encourage behavioural change.

Further, through partnerships with companies, schools, and retailers, RE:FORM collection boxes will be placed at various locations across the city for community members to conveniently drop off used clothing, thus ensuring that collected items are used to their maximum potential.

“Most people know that the use-and-throw culture is not sustainable but few people are taking the time to help solve it,” says Nitin Dani, Founder and Director, Green Initiatives. “That’s the main mission for RE:FORM—to change attitudes through information and inspiration, and to promote action by providing a quick convenient way for organizations and individuals to contribute to the solution.”

RE:FORM Partners’ Roles

Large and small companies, schools, industry bodies, and community service organizations can all play a big part in the eco-responsible textile movement in various ways. This ranges from implementing RE:FORM as a CSR program in their institutions as well as lending their expertise, time and resources to support the program. RE:FORM also offers volunteering opportunities for employees and students through its action campaigns, clothing collection drives and clothing sorting activities.

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For example, RE:FORM partner Community Center Shanghai that has been running the River of Hearts project since 2003, supports the program through sorting and sending used clothing items to disadvantaged communities in various parts of China. Another key partner, Crown Relocations provides logistics support throughout the project while Bonobo Jeans and Shanghai YK Pao School Primary Campus, the first participants in the program, have already placed RE:FORM boxes in their locations.

RE:FORM Launch

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RE:FORM will officially kick off at Green Initiatives’ 71st film screening and panel for Minimalism: A Documentary About the Important Things. The event will take place on Thursday, February 16th 2017 at Haworth Furniture, Shanghai. Doors open at 18:00, and the launch kicks off at 19:00. Snacks & beverages will be served.

Source: Green Initiatives

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