Did you know that every time you wash your clothes, fibers come off and get washed down into your septic system or to your wastewater treatment plant. At the plant, the microfibers make it through the treatment process and are discharged into the local body of water. On Bainbridge, that would be Puget Sound. What can you do to be a more conscientious clothing consumer? According to Jerilyn Ritzman, Washington State University Extension Island County Shore Stewards Program Coordinator, try the following:
- The next time you are in the market for a new washing machine, consider a front-loading machine. Additionally, try using liquid detergent, using shorter cycles, and washing with cold water, as these also reduce fiber loss.
- Purchase a microfiber filter for your washing machine.
- Choose clothing made from natural fabrics or fabrics that shed fewer fibers
- Wash fabrics less frequently if they don’t really need to be washed.
- Donate or recycle used textiles to keep them out of landfills.
To read Ms. Ritzman’s very informative article on microfiber pollution, go here.
For more information on textile recovery, go here.