‘Killing’ it with fast fashion

Experts discuss environmental cost of malpractices by Fashion & Design industry

‘Killing’ it with fast fashion

Photo. The Tribune

Tribune News Service
Amritsar, June 24

Fashion Industry is probably among the most pollution-causing industries in the world and when an expert in the field of designing from the IIT backs this argument, it definitely calls for attention. BBKDAV College’s Department of Design and Crafts organised a webinar on sustainability concepts in the field of design to acquaint students with sustainable techniques being used world over in the field.

How it is harmful

Fast fashion is mass production of cheap, poor quality, disposable clothing. It has an enormous environmental footprint for both its production and disposal. Clothing production requires a considerable amount of energy and resources, while it depends on toxic fabric dyes and other chemicals that contaminate fresh water. Fashion produces a tenth of the world’scarbon emissions. According to Levi Strauss & Co., producing a pair of jeans emits as much carbon as driving a car 80 miles.

Leading the webinar as panelist was Prof Raghuraman Iyer, a master of Design in Product Designing from IIT, Mumbai, and Head of Punyaa Education and Research Foundation. Prof Iyer asserted facts that point out the malpractices of fashion and design industry, including use of chemicals, synthetics and excessive wastage that contributes in pollution of environment resources.

“The need to move towards sustainable practices in designing and crafting of the products is more than ever now. Sustainable and sensible crafting will lead to less textile waste, less harm to animals, fairer wages and working conditions and a better tomorrow for the future,” he said. He mentioned that given the economical distress and suspension of operations in last year or so due to pandemic, the design industry needs to capitalise on recycling and reuse for saving expenditure and promoting sustainability.

The fast-changing fashion trends that have been leading to clothes, shoes and other products being thrown away after being used just once or twice is also leading to a wastage problem. Taking up all these issues and more, the participating faculty promoted sustainable ideas that could be taken up by the students, who will be a part of the industry in longer run.

“We have been promoting the concepts of recycling of fabrics, using natural elements and dyes, instead of chemicals for our students studying fashion, textile and interior designing. Over the years, we have seen emergence of the Fashion Industry as one of the biggest revenue churners, but the high demand-supply network comes at a cost of the nature.

Even while investing in furniture of the house, one needs to be cautious as the chemical polish used on it releases toxic fumes. We can overcome such issues by keeping high oxygen generating indoor plants or having good ventilation system,” said Prabhjot Kaur, Assistant Professor, Department of design, BBKDAV.

Principal Dr Pushpinder Walia too said after experiencing the pandemic, our generation must become more responsible.

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