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San Francisco is about to get even greener. Although the California city diverts about 80 percent of its waste from landfills, it still bins than 39 million pounds of clothing and other textiles every year, or enough to fill 1,500 Muni buses, according to the San Francisco Department of the Environment. But change is in the air. This afternoon, Mayor Ed Lee will launch the Zero-Waste Textile Initiative, a municipal program designed to eliminate textiles that wind up in landfills or incinerators. Part of the city’s goal to recycle, compost, or otherwise reuse all waste by 2020, #SFSaveFashion, in partnership with international textile-recycling firm I:Collect, will not only expand textile drop-off locations in the City by the Bay but it will also accept worn-out items previously considered trash.


The event will also commemorate the debut of the first I:CO City Initiative, a joint government, nonprofit, and private sector effort to divert waste that includes partners such as American Eagle Outfitters, Forever 21, Levi Strauss, H&M, The North Face, Puma, Goodwill, and the Salvation Army.

Designated drop-off boxes will be available at more than 160 city-wide locations.

Residents and businesses will be able to take their apparel, footwear, linens, and other textiles to designated drop-off boxes at more than 160 city-wide locations for reuse or recycling.

The initiative, according to Jennifer Gilbert, chief marketing officer of I:CO, will help discarded products find new life while generating economic growth and creating green jobs. “Everyone talks about cradle to cradle but even those products have to be collected first,” Gilbert told Ecouterre over the phone. “We tend to say ‘end of use’ rather than ‘end of life’ because we believe in endless uses.”

+ Zero-Waste Textile Initiative

+ I:Collect