Unifi, Inc., recently reached a stated goal set in 2017 of transforming more than 20 billion PET bottles. The driver of this new milestone was Unifi’s REPREVE platform of recycled performance fibers, which has been adopted by more than 500 global brand and textile partners.
To put the milestone into context, 20 billion single-serve plastic bottles can physically circle the earth approximately 100 times or fill the Empire State building more than 13 times.
This milestone is also the equivalent of keeping 156 plastic bottles per U.S. household (assuming approximately 128 million U.S. households) out of the landfill and transforming them into sustainable fabric with REPREVE recycled performance fibers that are used in apparel, upholstery, automotive and industrial applications.
“As we celebrate World Environment Day this week, we want to thank all of our brand and mill partners around the globe for helping us reach this significant achievement and working with us to reduce plastic bottle waste,” said Tom Caudle, president & COO of Unifi. “Because it takes one plastic bottle an average of 450 years or more to start decomposing, it’s important to keep as much plastic as possible out of our natural and urban landscapes. If each of us makes a conscious effort to recycle, we can improve our environment for today and can protect it for the future.”
According to Unifi, recycling and transforming these bottles has the potential to:
- Save enough energy to power more than 189,000 average homes for one year;
- Save more than7 billion liters of water, the equivalent of one year of drinking water for approximately 2.3 million people; and
- Improve air quality by avoiding more than 517 million kilogramsof CO2 emissions, the equivalent of eliminating CO2 emissions from the consumption of 1.2 million barrels of oil.
“Sustainability and recycling are key priorities for Unifi, and we are proud to lead by example as we continue to drive awareness of the importance of recycling,” Caudle concluded. “Consumer demand for more sustainable products will continue to drive demand for REPREVE from our brand, retail, and mill partners, and that will help us reach our goal of transforming 30 billion bottles in 2022.”