Fresh water. Human life wouldn’t exist without it, and neither would your cat, Chairman Meow.
As the climate changes, and weather patterns shift, experts warn us this most critical resource will become more and more scarce. That’s why it’s important to consider how our choices as consumers impact our freshwater supply.
Producing cotton clothing is extremely water intensive. Cotton is a very thirsty crop that requires significant irrigation in many of the hotter climates in which it is grown. This means water needs to be piped in from other sensitive environments or pumped up from rapidly depleting aquifers.
Organic cotton is not the answer. Although it avoids the toxic pesticides and synthetic fertilizers of conventional cotton, it can use even more water in its cultivation.
After it’s harvested, the cotton is bleached and dyed to achieve a desired color before being turned into garments. The majority of factories in which these processes are carried out do not have adequate wastewater treatment facilities, resulting in the release of massive volumes of polluted water directly into the environment.
Together, cotton cultivation, bleaching and dying consume 21 trillion gallons of fresh water annually and creates 20% of the world’s industrial water pollution annually.
An Everywhere recycled cotton garment uses no water to grow cotton and produces no wastewater in the dying process. The average human will drink ½ a gallon of fresh water a day to stay healthy, or 182 gallons per year. Your new Everywhere recycled cotton t-shirt saves 800 gallons of fresh water, which means enough water to keep you alive and healthy for over four years. Now that’s something worth drinking to!