Saving our Landfills from Textiles

In the past couple of days, I talked to people that have told me that their bed & bath linens were beyond their prime, and proceeded to purchase new items for their homes.

Those conversations, got me to start thinking about what to do with old bed & bath linens, afterall, I had been writing about how to recycle old bed pillows.  Then an article about the amount of textiles that are thrown away here in the USA, every year came across my desk.  The Enviromental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that 13.1 million tons of textiles were thrown away in 2010.   That is a lot of textiles filling up our landfills.

What to do?  I recommended to these customers that they look at donating these items to Goodwill or the Salvation Army.  How about homeless shelters, as they can always use towels, sheets, and of course blankets.  These items also make great bedding for animal shelters.

Another option that is just starting this month in Queen Creek, AZ, is a recycling program for textiles.  The city is pairing up with United Fibers to expand their curbside recycling program to include textiles – towels, sheets, blankets, clothing and shoes.

Phoenix Fibers is a closed-loop recycling company that converts textiles into environmentally-friendly home insulation. Photo: Phoenix Fibers

Those collected textiles will be sorted, weighed and processed, and then turned into eco-friendly home insulation by United Fibers sister company, Phoenix Fibers.

What a great idea to rid our landfills of textile waste.

Do you have old Bed & Bath Linens?  I hope I gave you some ideas as to what to do with them that is good for the environment.

Want more information on this curbside recycling program, click here for the full story.


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