National Geographic is recycling plastic by turning it into clothing

Single-use plastics are, perhaps, the greatest pollutant in the world that is threatening us today. But National Geographic has teamed up with The North Face to produce clothing made using this recycled plastic.

No place on Earth has been spared from single-use plastic pollution. Even the most remote places in our world have been contaminated with the stuff, resulting in microplastics that kill whales and other wildlife and even get inside our own bodies.

Unfortunately, many of these plastics are too expensive to be recycled.

But outdoor clothing company The North Face has teamed up with National Geographic to do something to promote single-use plastic recycling by making clothing out of it from hundreds of thousands of pounds of what they have collected from our National Parks.

As the companies point out:

“Over 8 billion metric tons of plastic have been produced since 1950, and that number is projected to increase to 34 billion metric tons by 2050. As of 2015, only around 9 percent of plastic was estimated to have been recycled. The world is struggling with a single-use plastic crisis and it is time for action.”

Indeed, so the two companies have partnered up to manufacture clothing using recycled single-use plastics. Among the products offered are tee-shirts, hoodies, and tote bags emblazoned with the words ‘Waste Is Over’ on them.

“We’re proud to partner with National Geographic to introduce this limited-edition Bottle Source collection crafted from single-use plastic sourced from the waste streams of our country’s most famous public spaces, including Yosemite, Great Smoky Mountains, and Grand Teton National Parks,” The North Face wrote on their website. “To craft our Bottle Source Collection, we pulled 384,000 pounds of plastic bottles from national park waste streams and recycled it into tees and hoodies. And with each new Bottle Source item we create, we donate one dollar to the National Park Foundation to support recycling programs—because one person’s trash affects everyone’s future.”

Not only is the company hoping to inspire other companies to recycle to reduce waste, but parts of the proceeds will also go toward funding our National Parks.

“WASTE IS OVER is our aspiration to stop thinking of plastic as waste that should be tossed and to join us in thinking of it as part of a cycle with other uses,” the company explains. “Waste can be obsolete if we commit to increase recycling and reuse practices. For every Bottle Source product we make, we’re donating one dollar to the National Park Foundation to support recycling and reuse programs so you can feel good in your purchase in more ways than one.”

We are already getting buried by single-use plastics. The best thing we can do is put an end to plastic production and start recycling as much of the stuff that’s left as we can to help clean up our world. This clothing idea is a start. Let’s just make sure we recycle the clothing as well when we don’t want it anymore.

Featured Image: The North Face

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Stephen D. Foster Jr.

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