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From speed to volume: reframing clothing production and consumption for an environmentally sound apparel sector

Maldini, Irene

FG Transdisziplinäre Nachhaltigkeitsforschung in der Elektronik

The article highlights the limitations of speed as a framework for discussing and tackling the environmental challenges of growing clothing volumes or quantities. This argument builds on a series of wardrobe studies mapping the number of clothing items owned, purchased, and disposed of by 25 people during six months, and the reasons behind purchase and disposal. The results indicate that clothing consumption is rarely driven by replacement and that opportunity plays a main role. These characteristics of clothing consumption explain why it takes more than producing long-lasting garments to reduce clothing demand. Rather than delaying the disposal of garments, a more straight-forward focus on reducing production is needed, that is the contribution of a volume-centric approach.