A study by the UK charity WRAP reveals, 67 million clothing items — mostly T-shirts, blouses, sweaters and hoodies — and as many as 22 million pairs of shoes could be discarded by UK homes as lockdown eases. A total of 184 million textile items have been earmarked for disposal, WRAP said, with people on average discarding 11 items of clothing during lockdown. Most will go to charity shops, which have slowly begun to reopen with social distancing measures in place. Other items have already been — or will be — headed straight to the landfill.
WRAP, a not-for-profit organization that works with governments, businesses and individuals to promote sustainability, undertook its research in late May, surveying 2,422 UK adults aged 18 and over. The report, titled “Clothing Behaviors During COVID-19 Lockdown,” prepared by Sarah Gray, said 41 % of UK citizens discarded textiles during the COVID-19 lockdown, mostly clothing, shoes, footwear, bedding, bags, accessories and household textiles. Some 57 % of the items earmarked for disposal had been set aside at home until the end of lockdown. The remaining 43 % of items had already been tossed away. The survey said 36 % people used the “general rubbish,” or household garbage, to get rid of one or more of their items.