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The options for fabrics and textiles are increasing in range. There are more choices than ever before for purchasing sustainable cloth materials.

When combined with research and technology, some interesting findings have made it possible to recycle items into versatile fashions, furnishings and other useful objects.

One place many companies are turning to for their material sourcing are the oceans, which are increasingly polluted with a circle of never-ending garbage. Several organizations exist that work with manufacturers to collect ocean debris and reprocess it for retail merchandise.

One such effort is the Healthy Seas Initiative which tries to rid the waters of discarded items like fishing nets and other equipment that endanger ocean life and pollute waterways. This huge recycling operation is largely done manually.

One endeavor by the initiative led to collaboration with a company called Aquafil, who was able to develop a reprocessed nylon material made from recycled plastic products. This product called Econly has a wide range and can be made into carpets, mold-set plastic objects, and fabrics for fashions including durable sportswear.

According to the company, in 2012 they were utilizing an average of 30% post-consumer ocean waste. However, they expect the current year’s sustainable material sourcing to increase to as much as 50% reprocessed waste used. The company stated that for every 10,000 tons of the eco-concerning material that is made, it will eliminate at least 11,000 tons of water pollutants as well as cut down emissions and decrease oil use.

Watch the following clips about the resourceful nylon material and the Healthy Seas Initiative in action collecting cast-off fishing nets in the North Sea to learn more about how they are making progress cleaning up the oceans – which is no easy task.

Our oceans are a supplier of many useful and magnificent things. However, when water waste is being utilized as a staple ingredient source for producing our requests, though a necessary solution, it does lead us to ask how we got to this point.

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