What Do Textile Reuse and Recycling and a Halloween Costume Swap Have in Common?
PleasantvilleRecycles presents its 2nd Annual Spooktakular Halloween Costume Swap on October 5, 12, and 19! Donate old costumes and decorations, and find something new!
boomers are often called the throwaway generation—we want everything but keep
nothing. Perhaps that is a harsh judgment, but focus on putting old clothing,
linens, and other textiles in the trash: The numbers speak for themselves.
According to the 2009 Facts & Figures of Municipal Solid Waste in the
United States (from the EPA) every person throws away 82 pounds of textiles
each year, and only 15% get recycled. That’s nearly 70lbs of clothes per person
that end up in landfills or the incinerator.
is that bad for the environment, it’s expensive! Trucking so much material to
the county’s incinerator increases the disposal fees and trucking fees we have
to pay, as well as adding to our fuel costs and emissions. As an example, here is Pleasantville in numbers:
82 lbs of textiles/person x 7,000 people in community = 547,000 lbs of textiles generated/year
547,000 lbs x 85% (estimated rate being disposed) – 487.900 lbs of textiles being thrown out
487,900 lbs/2,000 lbs = 243,95 tons of textiles
243,95 tons x $20/ton tipping fee = $4,699 year
We can all save when residents consider reusing or recycling all their clothes and other textiles.
Reuse and Recycle
The greenest way to go is to find someone local who wants your old things. Donate your old clothes and textiles to a rummage sale, or have one yourself. Do you have a friend or neighbor who might be interested? Look on Freecycle.org—people are always looking for used children’s clothes and maternity clothes in particular, and all you have to do is put them outside for pickup.
There are various other ways to donate and recycle clothes: put them in one of the large collection bins that you find at gas stations, supermarkets or parking lots in our communities. They are often managed by charity organizations such as Goodwill. Or bring your clothes to a second hand store. You’ve probably heard some retailers have now started to take back their old products for recycling, such as Nike, Patagonia, Eileen Fisher, H&M, to name a few. Check to see what the organization or store does and does not accept before making the trip.
What Becomes of Recycled Textiles?
According to the Council for Textile Recycling (CTR) and the Secondary Materials & Recycling Textiles Association (SMART), 45% of the collected textiles in the U.S. are sold and reused as secondhand apparel, 30% become wiping and polishing cloths, 20% are reprocessed into fiber, and 5% are unusable.
Why a Halloween Costume Swap Makes
Last year so many people had a great time choosing from among the many costume donations we received at our Pleasantville Spooktakular Halloween Costume Swap. They were happy to have new costumes, and we were thrilled to have been able to facilitate the exchange, helping to keep old costumes out of the trash. And the kids and Blythedale and Pleasantville Children’s Center were pretty excited, too—they got to enjoy the costumes we weren’t able to give away.
it was such a hit with residents in and around our community, we are doing it
again this year! Please mark your calendar and join us for out
2nd Annual Pleasantville Spooktakular Halloween Costume Swap, October 5, 12, 19 at Memorial Plaza Gazebo (at the Pleasantville train station) from 8:30am – 12:30pm.
Bring a gently used Halloween costume and/or paraphernalia or simply show up and choose a Halloween costume that’s new to you—or perhaps a mask or wig. It sure is fun for everyone and we hope to have another great turnout!
pleasantvillerecycles.org for details.