Fighting microfiber pollution demands a collaborative effort from the apparel industry. Among solutions in some steps of this process are filters catching microfibers during washing and the finishing treatments decreasing some microfiber shedding. However, starting with ingredients which do not shed any plastic microfibers into water, soil and air is fundamentally the most sustainable way forward. Consequently, we are very glad to share with you that the Ocean Clean Wash campaign by the Plastic Soup Foundation refers to Amberoot Material Environmental Sustainability Ratings for guidance on choosing the most and least environmentally friendly materials for making textile products.
Our Tool’s material rankings are based on how much water, land and energy each ingredient uses. The extent of the pollution caused to water, soil and air by each ingredient is also evaluated. Consideration on whether the ingredient is biodegradable, renewable or not is also taken into the account. Please check Amberoot Material Environmental Sustainability Rating Tool page for further information.
For more information on Plastic Soup Foundation Ocean Clean Wash Campaign visit their site. Or for more information on all great projects by Plastic Soup Foundation in tackling plastic pollution across wide range of sectors check the Foundation site.
Why Amberoot tool was created
When claiming that something is more sustainable or harmful than something else facts should matter. Currently besides Amberoot tool there is just one other tool in the apparel industry guiding textile product makers about the environmental sustainability of fabrics called Higg Index by Sustainable Apparel Coalition. However, there were several reasons why we chose not to use this particular tool and decided to create our own. For example Higg Index tool rates plastic (synthetic) fabrics as the most environmentally friendly with Polyester, Acrylic, Elastane making into their top 5!😱 Additionally, Higg Index tool is based on Cradle to Gate framework, which describes the system boundaries of an environmental Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) which covers all activities from the “cradle” (the extraction of raw materials) up to the factory gate, meaning that the largest source of the microplastic pollution in oceans, seas, lakes and rivers – synthetic microfibers – is totally ignored.