Columbia Sportswear new recycling program hopes to lower landfil - KPTV - FOX 12

Columbia Sportswear new recycling program hopes to lower landfill waste

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Columbia Sportswear launched a new recycling program on Wednesday that can give you a discount on some new gear.

The program is called the ReThreads program and it's already getting a good response.

Portland is just one of three cities chosen for this pilot program. 

Columbia told FOX 12 that most clothing bought in the U.S. ends up in landfills. 

In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, 85% of clothes get tossed out. That creates nearly 24 billion pounds of waste each year.

Now, Columbia is trying to lower those numbers by launching this new recycling program.

Here is how the ReThreads program works: You can bring in your clothing or shoe donations to one the stores with drop off bins. Each time you bring in items to recycle, they will give you a voucher for 10% off a Columbia purchase of $75 or more.

Columbia will then send the recycled items to a company who will work to re-purpose them, and if they're in good enough condition they will send them to find new homes through a second-hand seller.

FOX 12 spoke with a member of Columbia's Corporate Responsibility Team, he said people have already been stopping by and making donations.

"The EPA says 6% of all that's in the landfills currently is apparel and textiles. That's about 70 pounds per person, per year. So it's pretty staggering," said Peter Haney. "We just want to raise awareness, have people come down. We have such great product in this store. Donate your used clothing, get a discount and get some great new Columbia product."

The clothing you recycle doesn't have to be Columbia brand clothing, they will accept items from any brand that are, preferably, clean and dry.

If you would like to participate there are two Portland locations with the drop off bins: Columbia Flagship store on Southwest Broadway or the Sellwood Outlet off Southeast Tacoma Street.

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