by M.Y. Smith, UK
You can now drive for miles on dust roads that were once part of an abundant seabed, rich with life. The Aral Sea is gone, along with the communities of fishermen, who thrived on the shores of this disappearing Sea. A robust way of life, destroyed by factory farming mountains of unnecessary clothes, for the entitled rich living in ignorance in the wasteful western world. Now, there are giant industrial units, where the making of millions of unnecessary pairs of cotton jeans consumes life giving water. Every pair weakens the sustainability of life on our planet. Toxic chemicals kill essential river life. Families are forced to drink noxious water, breath polluted air, wash their clothes in effluent. A slow death begins with a rash on their skin, harming the children most of all. I begin to ask, how many tee-shirts, pairs of jeans, dresses do I need? How many clothes hang unused in my wardrobe? I am moved to stop buying more. I may never need to buy another item of clothing, even from a charity shop. Piles of unused clothes poison children on landfill sites in poor areas, around the world. They are toxic to make, toxic to break down. We are killing people. We are killing the Earth.
Inspired by Stacey Dooley’s programme investigating the ‘fast fashion’ industry.