Tired of schlepping your hand-me-downs all over town just to recycle them? You might not need to for much longer. City officials are teaming up with Housing Works, an organization dedicated to helping homeless people affected by HIV/AIDS, to create Refashion NYC – a new textile recycling program where clothing can be donated, using specially marked containers located throughout various apartment buildings in New York City.
“By making it easier for New Yorkers to donate or reuse their clothes, and saving taxpayers the high expense of long-distance transportation and waste disposal, we are achieving our vision of a greener, greater New York” said David Bragdon, director of the mayor’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability, as reported by the New York Times.
The main goal of the program is to recycle the estimated 200,000 tons of textile and apparel material that New Yorkers throw away each year. Not only would this program contribute to environmental sustainability efforts throughout the city, but it would also capture material that could be reused instead, and in turn reduce the city’s garbage disposal costs.
The program is completely free and open to residential buildings in all five boroughs. To apply, the landlord of a building just has to sign up online to receive a metal bin from the city. The building manager would then have to assign a staff member to monitor the bin, schedule pickups, and maintain it. All donations will also be tax-deductible. New York City launched a similar program with Wearable Collections last year, but RefashionNYC is aiming to make textile recycling even more convenient for New Yorkers.
According to the New York Times, despite the fact that a variety of textiles like shoes, clothing and other accessories are some of the most valuable recyclables, only a fraction of consumers are actually recycling textiles. Thankfully, however, NYC is tackling the problem in what is considered to be “one of the first large-scale consumer textile recycling programs in the country.”
Via New York Times