the(r)evolution of textiles:
Things to ponder:
Textiles launched the industrial revolution.
For 50 years the word industry only referred to one: textiles. "If fabrics can launch one revolution, why not another?"
"We are the living lab rats for the post WW2 chemistry experiment and the long-term effects aren't looking so good. But, as a species, we are still young and hopefully learning from our mistakes."
"I believe that we are collectively waking up from our better living through more things stupor and moving towards quality living through thoughtful things."
It was the textile mill that redefined landscapes and created industrial cities for the first time.
Mono-cropping replaced the family farm.
Cotton is the most heavily sprayed crop in the world. It accounts for 3% of farmland but accounts for 25% of all insecticide. A Cornell study reports that only .1% of pesticides end up on the pests. 99.9% ends up in our water, air and soil.
4% of total arable land has been abandoned due to intensive cotton cultivation.
Imagine the most heavily sprayed crop now chemical and GMO free and processed in an environmentally sensitive way.
Significantly cleaner air, water and healthier soil.
In 1839, in Manchester England there were 200,000 children employed in textile mills. The average life-span of the poor was 17.
What was once a source of pride turned into an embarrassment.
According to the World Health Organization it is estimated that 20,000 people die each year as a result of the pesticides sprayed on cotton.
According to the EPA, 7 of the top 15 pesticides sprayed are known, probable, or likely human carcinogens.
2,300 cotton farmers in India have committed suicide in the last 6 years. In the "cotton belt" in India it is reported that there is currently 1 suicide every 8 hours.
Imagine 1 in 7 people now employed in a healthy and fair environment. According to the United Nations database (2000), the textile and clothing industry creates more than 14% of the world's jobs.
The Global Organic Textile Standards address the use of toxins in the field and through the production supply chain. It also includes fair-trade requirements.