For several years, many people have been recycling. We separate our glass, plastic and paper from each other so that these materials can be reused. But we are taking a next step. For years, we are well known with charity shops or second-hand stuff, but it’s for the first time that reuse and sharing is winning popularity on a wide scale.
Take for example the retail chain H&M, which is committed to a sustainable fashion future. To do this they ask consumers to collect their old clothes and hand it over at H&M. The objective is to make new clothes out of these old clothes. This decreases the waste of raw materials. To make as many people aware of H&M working methods, the retail chain works closely with music artist M.I.A. and others who have influence in the fashion industry.
Not only H&M has deliberately engaged in recycling, also other major fashion brands took this step. Each of them have their own initiatives to contribute to the development towards a circular economy. More and more brands will operate according to the “cradle to cradle” principle, in which it is important for everyone to consider that, while developing products, raw materials should be reused as well as other materials.
What many people already have done for years is recycling to contribute their bit to the environment. But what many companies do is work according to the ‘cradle to cradle’ principle. Now it is no longer just about recycling the products, but also about figuring out how all the materials can be re-used during the development of the product. The clothing brand Wear2 invented a new type of yarn, namely biodegradable. This makes it much easier to recycle their garments.
We also hear a lot from upcoming designers, who more and more use their voices against the disposable consumption. An example of this is the designer Lisa Konno. She uses recycled textile waste for her own collection and incorporates this into her garments. By working with textile processing companies, she can continue to develop her technologies.
This is a way to bring the importance of the circular economies under attention, but there are more ways to do this. An example is ‘vlogging’. This is a relatively new medium to reach a large audience. In particular, the younger generations are susceptible to this kind of movies. They often buy what the vlogger praises, but the channel also ensures that knowledge is shared. In this way, consciousness is being increased.
There are several companies in various sectors that address the trend of sharing. Examples of this are: SnappCar (sharing cars), thuisafgehaald.nl (food sharing), Airbnb (sharing housing).
All of these companies contribute to the reuse of products and a circular economy, creating a cleaner environment.
Sharing knowledge and products contributes to a circular economy. If this is brought under the attention more, people will start living in a way that is more aware. This will have a positive influence on the environment.
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