Articles | In-Depth Analysis | Sustainability


Published: September 12, 2022

The methods and actions required to manage garbage from its beginning to the end are referred to as waste management. This encompasses waste collection, transportation, treatment, and disposal, as well as waste management process monitoring and control, as well as waste-related laws, technologies, and economic systems. The presence of humans on Earth is the outcome of a fortunate series of situations in which prerequisites for species development were there, allowing evolution to occur and for us to achieve our current state of being. Changes in these conditions could imperil our frail existence at any time, and this far-reaching effect could emerge from modifications that appear minor by cosmic measures. They could, for example, cause our inability to breathe, stay warm or cool, or grow the food we require. As a result, we can only exist because our planet provides all of the food we require with little work on our side. As our environment, we can generally define the set of conditions to which we are exposed.

One of the smallest ways we lessen the risk of extinction is to protect our body from excessive temperature fluctuation through the usage of textiles. Textiles are also employed to make our lives more comfortable and convenient. Without them, life would be harsher and we would most likely not live as long as we do now.

Commercially, the manufacturing of textile goods influences textile waste generation; the more the output, the larger the amount of trash. This, in turn, is a function of customer demand, which is determined by economic conditions. While this may have a minor impact on trash output in the manufacturing sector, it has a considerably higher impact on home textile waste production.Consumers respond to changes in fashion in both apparel and home interior design. Clothing can become outdated extremely fast due to seasonal changes in fashion, which encourages the substitution and disposal of outdated, but high-quality apparel. As a result, in reaction to a “throwaway society,” manufacturers will increasingly produce large quantities of low-durability apparel. Economic success also has an impact on this tendency; as consumer spending increases, so does waste output from both the manufacturing and home sectors.

Waste Management Methods

Recycling Textile Waste

  • Regeneration

Cleansing cloth, yarns untwisted and re-spun into new yarn varieties, mattresses, and wadding can all be made from reclaimed/recycled fibres. Another process is regeneration, in which the fibre is regenerated from a natural source using heat and chemicals. Tencel, Lyocell, and Seacell are a few notable brands that produce textile fibres from wood. The trees are felled, and the wood is chopped into minute particles that, after being treated with chemicals and subjected to high temperatures and pressure, are spun into a textile thread. These are used to create fabrics with long-lasting qualities.

  • Composting

In recent years, increased awareness of the negative impacts of non-biodegradable synthetics has created enormous opportunity for manufacturers to consider degradable/compostable textiles. Nappy pads, wipes, agro-textile mulching sheets, and car interiors are now designed to be returned to nature at the end of their life cycle.Non-wovens and disposals are the order of the day. It will be profitable if industry research focuses on materials of 100% natural origin that can be entirely decomposed when discarded in landfills at the end of their life cycle. This method can be used to process both natural and regenerated fibres. PLA biodegradable polymers are now available in the market. Polylactic acid is a corn-derived polymer. The inherent antimicrobial property is improved and it is then used in medicinal textiles. When discarded in a landfill, this fabric is compostable/degradable.Various studies are being conducted to convert chemical-free post-industrial waste into composts and apply it to plants as bio-manure. Effective microorganisms can be used to fortify and enrich the medium, making it more nourishing to the soil, plants, and water bodies.

  • Textiles with technical applications

Textiles were formerly created and then tested for their appropriateness for an end use; if positive, they were converted into the required product for a purpose. In contrast, the fibre selection, yarn qualities, and functional finishing are selected and implemented depending on the properties necessary in the ultimate product. Technitex, or technological textiles, is now depicted as a massive banyan tree, with all application regions linked in the main bark. Recycled fabrics are used for filtering. Recycled fibres are also used in automotive interiors, agrotextiles, geotextile reinforcement, acoustics, building construction textiles, upholstery, package textiles, and food packing materials.

Source Reduction

To produce little or no waste for most cases, the first stage in an integrated waste management system should be source reduction. For example, avoiding waste formation, internal waste reuse, reuse in other products, and so on. Incineration: It is a method of recovering thermal energy by burning solid waste. For example, PP has the same heat value as gasoline. Textile waste, such as short, shredded, or loose fibres, can also be recycled into palatable fuel. However, incinerator chimneys release organic chemicals such as dioxins, heavy metals, acidic gases, and dust particles, all of which have the potential to harm both persons and the environment. There is also an issue with disposing of remaining ash, which is likely to contain a dangerous concentration.

Dumping grounds

It should be the last option in a comprehensive waste management system. As textile waste decomposes in landfills, it contributes to the creation of leachate, which has the potential to contaminate both surface and groundwater sources. Another byproduct of landfill decomposition is methane gas, which is a primary greenhouse gas and a significant contribution to global warming, but can be used if captured. The degradation of organic fibres and yarns, such as wool, creates significant volumes of ammonia and methane. Ammonia is extremely hazardous in both terrestrial and aquatic habitats, and it can be lethal in gaseous form. It has the ability to raise the amount of nitrogen in drinking water, which can be harmful to humans.


To maximise treatment and reuse options, textile sector waste streams should be considered independently. When the properties of the individual streams are known, it is possible to determine which streams should be combined to improve treatability and boost reuse alternatives. It is critical to investigate all elements of decreasing textile industry emissions and waste products because doing so would result not only in improved environmental performance, but also in significant savings for individual textile enterprises.


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