Shabu Shabu: recovery of textile waste

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The textile industry is one of the most polluting in the world. According to the United Nations, the emissions associated with textile production exceed those generated by all international maritime flights and shipments combined, thus contributing greatly to climate change and global warming. Every year 93,000 million cubic meters of water are used, enough to satisfy the needs of 5 million people. Likewise, half a million tons of microfiber are thrown into the sea, equivalent to 3 million barrels of oil.

Shabu Shabu was chosen as one of the winners on circular economy of the Resilient Buenos Aires Challenge. The initiative produces garments from the recovery of textile waste. It operates through a network of public, private and civil society stakeholders.

This entrepreneurship contributes to reduce emissions associated to clothes producing by using textile waste from the industry in the design and manufacture of new garments. The waste material is saved from manufactures, as a part of strategic alliances, as well as used clothes collected through citizen awareness campaigns.

Shabu Shabu manages to produce clothes with up to 98% recycled fibers from industrial waste and minimize the consumption of water and energy in their manufacture, as well as the use of chemicals. The initiative contributes to foster a change in the textile industry with a new sustainable production model.

Buenos Aires has identified the effects of climate change as one of the main threats to the city. Then, the improvement of new production schemes with reduced environmental impacts but that generate jobs and economic growth is a direct contribution to the strategy of resilience of the city on its axe of innovation, talent and opportunities and environment and sustainability.

Read more of the history, the experiences and the learnings of this initiative in the article published in “Circular economy and resilience in the cities. Innovative initiatives for a better quality of life” (in Spanish) of the Resilient Cities Initiative.

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[1] https://news.un.org/es/story/2019/04/1454161 

Shabu Shabu: recovery of textile waste