42 manufacturing phases 421 textile manufacturing

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4.2 Manufacturing Phases 4.2.1 Textile Manufacturing Processes In textile manufacturing processes, such as dyeing, bleaching, and fi nishing, a large amount of water and toxic chemicals (e.g., benzidine, heavy metals, formaldehyde, and azo) used by textile mills pollutes the environment and becomes the cause of various diseases (allergies, eczema, and cancer) (Oecotextiles N.D.). Bleaching To be considered suitable material for clothing, the greige material, in its natural form, must be bleached to remove color, odor, and impurities acquired from the use of chemicals for cultivation (e.g., pesticides, fungicides, worm killers, and lubri- cants). One of the most frequently used bleaching chemicals is chlorine bleach, which is extremely hazardous to the environment and human health. Ecotextiles suggest an eco-friendly bleaching method using hydrogen peroxide made from oxygen and wastewater treatment, so the bleaching processes create less toxic chemical residuals and water waste (Organiccotton N.D.a). Dyeing and fi nishing After bleaching, fabrics are dyed for recoloring as well as removing aromatic amines (e.g., benzidine and toluidine). Dyeing processes require the use of multiple toxic chemicals (e.g., heavy metals, pigments, ammonia, and alkali salts). Over 40 % of dyeing colorants include a carcinogen material-bound chlorine, and mordants (color fi xer), such as chromium, are extremely toxic and impactful to nature (Oecotextiles N.D.). Additionally, dyeing consumes the largest amount of water in garment manufacturing processes. Currently, the textile mills conduct approximately 3,600 types of textile dyeing procedures using over 8,000 chemicals (Kant 2012 ). The Environmental Sustainability in the Textile Industry 31
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average-sized mills use about 0.26 million liters of water to dye 8,000 kg of fabric every day; this means each kilogram of fabric consumes approximately 30 50 L of water (Kant 2012 ). The water wastes created by chemical dyeing are classi fi ed as the most hazardous across industries, and they are often drained into water sources without being treated to remove heavy metal-based mordant (Oecotextiles N.D.). The global denim industry is the largest contributor of dyeing pollution to the environment, as the industry occupies over 30 % of the present-day total global textile industry (Greenpeace 2012 ). For instance, Xintang, China, the denim capital of the world, manufactures over 260 million pairs of denim apparel annually and accounts for approximately 60 % of total denim production in China and 40 % of total denim sales in the USA every year (Greenpeace 2010 ). In 2010, Greenpeace tested water samples obtained from throughout Xintang and found fi ve heavy metals (cadmium, chromium, mercury, lead, and copper) in 17 of the 21 samples, with one of these samples containing cadmium that exceeded by 128 times the national limits (Greenpeace 2010 ).
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