Who would have thought that textile recycling can dramatically reduce water usage and greenhouse gas emissions? This is exactly what Evrnu, a US-based textile company, is doing.
Cotton and polyester are kings among fabrics. In fact, 90 percent of all clothing in the world is made up of one or the other. Stacy Flynn, the CEO and founder of Evrnu, is passionate about reducing textile waste through recycling. She has taken post-consumer cotton waste and found a way to turn it into a regenerative fiber, instead of throwing it in the ocean. Basically, they take old, worn clothes, break them down to their molecular components, and create new, higher-quality fiber that can be recycled again and again in the future. Evrnu can produce fabrics like cotton as well as ones that feel and look like silk or denim.
As sustainability slowly takes hold in the fashion world, Evrnu has already partnered with brands like Levi’s, Target, and Stella McCartney to produce clothes using revolutionary methods. Evrnu is determined to make a positive impact by transforming the way the fashion industry and its manufacturers produce and recycle clothes.
Flynn believes that if people are able to make such a monumental impact in the world when they’re not trying to, then their impact can be even greater when they ARE trying to make one, particularly a positive one. Her mission has always been to change the standards so that the children of the world and in the future will have the opportunity to live in a healthier, pollution-free world. “We decided to try to figure out a way to take waste—the natural byproduct of the industry—break it down, and turn it into a usable form. If we could pull that off, then the brands and retailers wouldn’t have to change too much about the way they operate their business, consumers wouldn’t have to change too much about the way they consume, and the effect would significantly reduce our impact to the air, water, soil, and trees,” Flynn said.
Evrnu collects textile waste before it goes into landfills and gives it a deep clean. The technology Evrnu has uses five different patented solvents to liquefy cotton waste and transform it into a new fiber altogether. The process is quicker than traditional cotton production, taking about seven hours as opposed to one year. If major clothing companies decide to utilize this new technology, which uses 98 percent less water than virgin cotton and generates 80 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than polyester production, it could have a colossal impact on the fashion industry’s overall carbon footprint.
Evrnu doesn’t endorse the replacement of all virgin materials like cotton with Evrnu fabrics. Instead, they want to see a balanced assortment of virgin and regenerative materials in the industry. A simple way to get involved in sustainability is to stop throwing garments away and start donating or buying second-hand clothing. Evrnu hopes to get more brands on board to expand the pool of people who know about and want to test out the technology, truly an innovated revolution.