Campus California, a Richmond, CA based non-profit, collected and reused over 3000 tons of donated clothes in 2011 according to their annual report. When those numbers are applied to the EPA’s carbon emissions calculator, it translates to the prevention of over 12 tons of CO2 emissions being released into the air.
That’s right, reusing clothes prevents CO2 from being released into the air. Why? Because the technology used to manufacture 3000 tons of clothes is a technology that uses energy. That energy also produces waste in the form of CO2. So when we reuse clothes, we also prevent the need to create more cloths, thus preventing the need to use energy and give off waste.
This applies to more than just clothes. The less we throw away in the landfill and the more we reuse, the less energy we need to invest into making new things and the less waste we produce. Plain and simple.
But Campus California went a step further. They sold the clothes that were donated and earned over $300,000. The money was then re-donated to organizations that help promote sustainability around the world. Not a bad huh?
Plus, according to Jan Sako, Campus California’s public relation manager, “In general, reuse and recycling creates 8 times more jobs per ton of material than landfilling.”
So what are the lessons learned? Reusing things prevents energy consumption, reduces carbon emissions, provides a valuable resource that can be profited from, and creates jobs. This is a pretty darn good incentive for reusing things.
Thanks to CCTG.org for the photo.