The environment: How our old clothes pollute Ghana

The environment: How our old clothes pollute Ghana


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France 2
Article by

N. Bertrand, J. Barrère, C. Marchand – France 2

France TVs

A significant part of the clothing used in the West ends up on the beaches and in the seas of African countries. In Ghana, we no longer know what to do with these old used clothes.

The waves of the Atlantic Ocean relentlessly reject them on the beaches, where they pile up for hundreds of meters. Thousands of clothes worn in the West end up on the sides of Ghana and even in the center of Accra, the capital. The artificial sand dunes, which are twenty meters high today, have not stopped growing for fifteen years. “We burn clothes over and over, but there’s always more. makes us sick”Someone explains. These fumes are potentially toxic, although no studies have been conducted.

Every day 160 tons of clothes arrive in Ghana, which no one wants in Western countries anymore. An entire economy has developed around these used clothing. But few of them are usable. More than 70 tons of cloth end up in landfills every day, an environmental disaster. Liz Ricketts Foundations of a non-governmental organization to understand the impact of textile pollution. “It will take years for the clothes to degrade, during which time harmful and toxic microfibers are released into the environment,” founder explains or Enterprise. Brands and consumers are to blame according to this former New York designer who is calling for a change in consumption, as the life of clothing gets shorter. At least one in eight T-shirts end up in an African landfill.

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