The North Face is expanding their Clothes the Loop recycling program, which to date has diverted 14,540 pounds of apparel and footwear from landfills. The program initially begun at 10 North Face retail locations in 2013 and will now expand to all 83 of its U.S. stores.
The program allows North Face customers to recycle unwanted footwear and apparel from any brand, in any condition. The items are then reused or reverted into basic materials for product manufacturing. Clothes the Loop sends the items to a recycling center where they are sorted into over 350 categories and designated to be reworn, repurposed, or recycled into products like insulation, carpet padding, stuffing for toys, or fiber for new apparel and footwear.
The Environmental Protection Agency has estimated that 24 billion pounds of post-consumer textile waste (PCTW) goes to landfills each year, which is equivalent to about 70 pounds of textiles per person. This accounts for about five percent of landfill space. The amount of PCTW has been steadily growing, while the number has a major affect on greenhouse gas emissions and water usage.
“We’re committed to creating responsible products–both in how we design them, and also in how long they last,” said Adam Mott, director of sustainability at The North Face. “We hope this campaign gets people thinking about the lifecycle of the products they buy and how they can take simple steps to help protect our environment.”