August 19th, 2007, 09:57 AM #1
distressed denim destroying cities
i never knew the harm of wearing distressed denim...
Tehuacàn a city of Mexico is the latest victim (in a long line) to suffer the environmental impact of fashion. The news follows a report exposing the damaging affects, chemicals used to distress denim are having on the city's landscape and waterways. The Guardian's Jo Tuckman writes, 'of most concern environmentally are the laundries where clothes are sent for distressing. There, jeans are sandpapered, marked with mechanical tools and faded with large quantities of potassium permanganate – a bleaching agent'. One farmer said. “As well as being blue, it burns the seedlings and sterilises the earth.”
The city's underground waterways, which were once famous for their mineral springs and spas, have now been polluted, after the city with more than 700 manufacturers, has became a denim hub for global companies. A local activist, Martin Barrios said. “Jeans were born to be used by workers. Now they can cost thousands of dollars and are produced on the backs of exploitation and environmental destruction.”
Conscious raising campaigns work at putting pressure on Tehuacàn’s most established factories to fulfil minimum international standards. Juan Carlos López, a company’s chief of health, hygiene and environment, told The Guardian. “The contamination is mainly the fault of the companies that act outside the law. We are always getting inspected. Nobody inspects the others.”
“We don’t think that the problem is wearing denim, the problem is the toxic styles imposed by the big brands.” Mr Barrios said.
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