Manufacturing garment products is not only linked with making of a final product, it also relates to the processing of raw materials. Therefore, the process cotton production to cotton processing need to be under consideration. The main process continues to convert cotton fabric through spinning, weaving, bleaching, dyeing and printing processes. All these stages requires chemical usage and produce a large amount of effluent. There is a great risk of environmental degradation through cotton processing effluents and waste water. The chemical use contaminates water badly and poses threat to aquatic eco-system. Therefore, it is essential to have treatment of polluted water and solid wastes before discharging into nature. It should also consider to reuse of treated water inside the process system rather than discharging into nature or nearby water body.
The following recommendations for textile process should be considered for a better practice.
Industries should construct ETPs and operate them regularly to treat effluent.
If the set up cost of ETP is high, adjacent small factories at the same industrial area can establish common ETPs to treat their effluents and share costs.
To make mandatory initiatives for all textile dyeing industries to adopt cleaner and efficient production.
An increasing number of garment industries need to consider new set up rules. Government should permit new garment industries only in specific zones and not in residential or commercial areas.
The industry building should be inspected first, checking the legal papers and risk issues and then should give the permit.
Waste minimization is the great policy and can provide a significant decrease of pollution amount as well as production costs and treatment operation costs.
The workers who are involved with dyeing process need extra high precaution and should have regular check up of health by the company employed doctor.
To choose the appropriate treatment technology for the effluent according to the pollutant properties.
Two or more combined process should consider at an effluent treatment plant to bring efficient result. For example, the combined method of adsorption and nanofiltration.
Introducing cleaner production can promote pollutant reduction as well as re circulation of treated water in the system process. It would be better to have treatment of waste water immediately after each stage.
To consider levelling out of the waste water properties and to stabilize the production process.
Using a recovery function, used chemicals can be reused in the system. For example, toluene mixed with waste water.
Introduce an industrial ecology and symbiosis approach within the same industrial zone that would certainly reduce the waste generation and will ensure the efficient resources use.
Instead of using synthetic compounds or chemicals, natural dyes can be adopted. In that case, toxic mordants should be avoided such as Chromium based mordants.
Finally, the conventional cotton production requires a huge amount of pesticides. Therefore, organic cotton production should be encouraged and use of a natural pesticide such as neem oil. Focus should go to recycles cotton, reprocessing and reuse.