Thrifting is a recent fad among millennials and college students. Scouring second hand stores for vintage tops and retro accessories isn’t uncommon in my social circle. It feels like you're stepping back in time, and finding amazing 70’s bell bottoms for $2.00 is hard to beat. But not only is the activity fun, thrifting actually helps the environment.
Image courtesy of putthison.org
According to an article from The Gaia Movement, “On average 1 lb. of clothes that is sold as second hand clothes save 5.9 lb. of CO2.” This means that if every American citizen made the decision to buy one pound of used clothing, instead of one pound of new clothing, the earth would save 1.5 billion lb of CO2! It’s such a simple act, yet so few people are doing it. Many consider used clothing “gross,” “dirty,” or “old.” But perhaps if they knew the huge environmental benefits, they’d change their minds.
And this doesn’t stop at clothing. Buying used books for college courses, used kitchenware for your apartment, and even used cars helps cut down on our use of earth’s resources, and slows the process of human pollution. In fact, some news sources claim that buying a used car is more environmentally friendly than buying a hybrid. The reason being that it takes a huge amount of energy to produce automobiles. According to Wired News a new Toyota Prius “has consumed the equivalent of 1,000 gallons of gasoline before it reaches the showroom.” This is a result of the amount of CO2 that is released into the atmosphere from the production of the vehicle.
So if you’re looking for a simple way to start saving the environment, look no further than a thrift store. And don’t just shop at them, donate yourself! If you have an extra Anatomy textbook lying around that you never use, donate it, give it to someone that needs it. It means that one less book will be printed, one less tree will be cut down, and one less pound of CO2 will be omitted into the air.
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