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Dirty Dozen – Clothing and Textile Disposal
By Sarah Edwards On June 1, 2021 · Leave a Comment · In Director's Blog, Environmental Control, Waste Reduction, Waste Reduction
CCDES is a member of the Illinois Recycling Contamination Task Force, a group that addresses pressing recycling issues throughout the state. To answer specific recycling questions, the task force has launched the Dirty Dozen Campaign.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, textile waste accounted for 8% of all landfilled municipal solid waste in 2017. In Cook County, 6% of our residential waste is textiles. But this does not mean you should put these items in your recycling bin or cart either.
What can you do with clothing and textiles you no longer want or need?
REDUCE Your Textile Waste
- Think before you buy new clothing. Consider if you already have a similar item. Do not buy items you are unlikely to wear more than a few times.
- Consider mending or repairing your clothes.
- Buy secondhand clothing when you can.
REUSE Your Clothing and Textiles
- Re-create into something incredible.
- At home:
- Use old clothing for a new sewing project.
- Make cleaning rags out of old t-shirts & socks.
- Create fabric yarn from old t-shirts
- Use old t-shirts to create a reusable market bag.
- With others:
- Host or attend a clothing swap/exchange.
- Donate to:
- Local homeless shelters
- Resale shops
- Non-profit organizations or charitable organizations, such as Goodwill or The Salvation Army
RECYCLE Your Clothing and Textiles
- Clothing retailers may collect clothing in stores. Some have even offered discounts towards new clothing items when recycling an old garment.
- Some retailers offer discounts or participate in clothing recycling.
- For clothing recycler locations, use Earth911’s locator tool or donation bins near you.
Tagged with: dirty dozen • reduce reuse recycle • waste reduction
A Message from the President
I believe that Cook County should be a world-class model of sustainability. We are working not only to boost sustainability practices throughout County government, but also to join forces with local governments, nonprofits and business, to accomplish more than we could separately in making each of Cook County’s communities sustainable. To further this work, I appointed Deborah Stone as the County’s first Chief Sustainability Officer, and as Director of the Department of Environmental Control. I also recognize that Cook County needs to share ideas and collaborate with a diverse group of community leaders and sustainability experts. In March 2012, I appointed the Cook County Sustainability Advisory Council to help lift our vision higher and give us access to best practices. You can meet the Council members and read more about their mission in the “Advisory Council” section of this website. Toni Preckwinkle,Cook County Board President
What is Sustainability?
" Ensuring that there is enough for today without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs."Deborah StoneChief Sustainability Officer, Cook County Government
Contact UsCook County Chief Sustainability Officer
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