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Organic Clothing – Is Your Clothing Delivering Death in Small Doses?
Date:6/15/2010

es alone, pesticides were found to pollute every stream and over 90% of wells sampled in a study by the US Geological Survey.

Many pesticides are not easily degraded. So once they escape into the environment, their impact can have lasting deadly effects on soil biodiversity, plant diversity and animal diversity. Animals that are already stressed are particularly vulnerable. For example, the USDA and USFWS estimate that about 20% of the endangered and threatened species in the US are jeopardized by use of pesticides.

“The sad reality is that pesticide use is not necessary,” says Desbarats. “The pesticide industry is big, valued at well over 33 billion and growing rapidly. These pesticide companies want us to keep using and they spend a lot of money trying to convince the agricultural community of its necessity.”

But the true reality is that alternatives to pesticides do exist such as manually or mechanically removing weeds and pests from plants or, using traps and lures to catch pests. Pests can be controlled by removing their pest breeding sites, planting native plants that are resistant amongst the main crop and using bio-control agents such as birds and other pest eating animals.

According to Desbarats “about one third of a pound of pesticides is required for every cotton shirt made. We are literally contributing to the death of farmers in third world countries as well as to the destruction of habitat. I can see some logic in the argument that pesticides are needed to keep feeding the world. It is not a view I agree with, but I can see the reasoning. But where is the justification in the destruction of lives and habitat just to keep us in fast, cheap fashion? I see no logic there.”

At the consumer level, there are options. By choosing to buy organic foods and organic clothing, industry will be forced to change. In the US, over 70% of the economy is driven by the consumer so by making
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