Go Green News

The Monster in our Closet: Fast Fashion & Textile Waste on the Rise

By Morgan O’Connor, Marketing & High Performance Building Fellow

Warehouse full, floor to ceiling with old clothing

In 1980 the EPA found the U.S. to have generated roughly 5 billion pounds of textile waste in the public waste stream. That amount has since spiked to 32.44 billion pounds in 2014. This is post-consumer textile waste, which includes products such as clothing, footwear, fashion accessories, towels, bedding, and drapery that have already been purchased. 95% of all textiles have the potential to be reused or recycled, but currently they are recycled at a rate of only 15%. This disproportionate rate is thought to be caused by lack of awareness among individuals, as this is only municipal solid waste, meaning what people are throwing away in their public waste stream, not waste generated by businesses, including the fashion industry. So this problem largely lies with us – the individual.

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EcoFellows Take New York

EcoFellows, Jorge and Morgan, happy to be in NYC!

EcoFellows, Jorge and Morgan, happy to be in NYC!

By Morgan O’Connor, Market & High Performance Building EcoFellow

Last month the Center for EcoTechnology sponsored Willow, Jorge, and I as EcoFellows to attend the International Conference on Sustainable Development (ICSD) in New York City. The conference was an eye-opening experience as we were exposed to new applications for sustainable development practices from around the world.

The ICSD was started in 2013 in Dakar, Senegal, in hopes of creating solutions to the complicated problems standing in the way of developing sustainable communities. Realizing that there was need for a larger conversation, the conference grew to international levels, partnering with the Global Association of Master’s in Development Practice and the Sustainable Development Solutions Network. Now the conference runs annually, hosted by the Earth Institute of Columbia University.

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5 Easy Ways to be More Energy Efficient

By: Shelby Kuenzli, Digital Marketing EcoFellow

Here at CET, we make green make sense and have been helping people and businesses in the area save energy and money for over 40 years. Saving Energy is a community effort and you can be part of the solution! Join us in celebrating Energy Efficiency Day on Thursday, October 5 by taking these 5 easy steps to be more energy efficient in your life!

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Top 14 Ways to Reuse your Paper and Plastic Bags

By: Shelby Kuenzli, Digital Marketing EcoFellow

Massachusetts has often been at the forefront in sustainable development and environmentally progressive policies. As of September 2017, 55 Massachusetts cities and towns, representing 19% of the state’s population, have passed a ban on single-use plastic shopping bags. Plastic bags can take hundreds of years to decompose and since recycling plastic bags is a costly process,
less than 5% of plastic grocery bags in the U.S. end up being recycled. Since Northampton passed a plastic bag ban, your options are to bring your own reusable grocery bags or be provided with paper bags at the counter. Learn how you can reuse your old plastic bags and paper bags in creative ways that keep them out of the landfill!

 

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Meet Lorenzo Macaluso

Meet Lorenzo Macaluso

Lorenzo Macaluso

Lorenzo Macaluso, Director of Client Services

The Center for EcoTechnology may be a local non-profit, but our programs and knowledge extend across the country. Lorenzo Macaluso is a national expert in all things waste. This fall he’s going to be speaking from the east coast to the west coast about donation, policy and technical assistance, funding, composting management, and food donation. We’re grateful to have Lorenzo at CET and wanted to share more about him!

Lorenzo Macaluso is the Director of Client Services here at the Center for EcoTechnology. He has been with CET for 17 years and throughout that time he has taken on several integral roles. He provides technical assistance, training, and outreach to businesses and institutions to help improve environmental performance. He also aids CET in finding new opportunities to expand our work and increase our impact through saving energy and reducing waste.

Lorenzo developed a toolkit for restaurants and schools interested in establishing composting programs. He also helped develop and oversee the implementation of CET’s Green Business Services, which provides waste diversion and energy efficiency information, as well as technical assistance to a wide range of organizations throughout Massachusetts and New England. Outside of CET Lorenzo also serves on the MassDEP Organics Subcommittee and was part of the DEP’s Mercury Management Act work group.

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