What the Labels Don't Say...

By Daniel Chinoy
(Article and image reprinted with permission from China Daily)

Textile mills are one of the most environmentally harmful kinds of factories in China, using vast quantities of water and energy and often emitting what the Natural Resources Defense Council’s Linda Greer calls a “noxious cocktail” of chemicals. Fierce competition to offer lower prices, consumer demands and increased
government regulation has started to push some factories to be more efficient by reducing their chemical, water, and energy consumption. But many factory owners remain reluctant to pay for proper treatment of the chemicals they use, preferring to simply dump them into nearby rivers and lakes. Here’s a brief introduction to what goes into making your clothes—and what it can do to you if it is allowed to leak into the environment without proper treatment.