Environmental Impact

Our Environmental plan: Eliminate water pollution, save production costs and the planet’s fresh water supply

Water FREE, not a drop used, not a drop wasted

Conventional water repellent treatments (DWRs) have relied on Fluorocarbon chemistries to add repellent properties to textiles.  They are applied to shoes, carpets, jackets, and a wide variety of consumer products. In the past they offered excellent water repellency and some oil repellency.  But like cigarettes from the past, everyone thought they were cool, worked great and caused no harm.

Water should be pure, clean and life-sustaining. But there’s a growing problem with water pollution and most people don’t know about it. The cause of much of the world’s dirty water is hanging in our closets. The textile industry is quietly polluting trillions of liters of water every year, making it the second largest water polluter in the world.

There are more than seven billion people on the planet wearing and buying clothing. People use clothing to define their social status. The growing middle classes around the world are purchasing clothing at a much faster rate than the population growths and the global water supplies are being consumed at rapidly accelerating rates. The textile industry continues to use water for the production of textiles because there was no better alternative until now.

Using Clean Chemistry™, GREEN THEME TECHNOLOGIES, INC. has developed the revolutionary EMPEL™ process that permanently bonds finishes to fibers – all without using a single drop of water or releasing any hazardous discharge.

Water free production involves several breakthrough innovations;

  1. The EMPEL process starts with a Hydrocarbon monomer base. Unlike conventional textile production, our breakthrough process uses no water to carry chemicals onto the fabrics. Traditional water bath production processes generate trillions of liters of polluted water that regularly gets discharged into streams and oceans around the world.
  2. Every drop of our monomer chemistry is applied to the fabric and nothing is wasted. Normal water based production processes create a water bath to wash performance chemistries onto fabrics.  This process called “padding” requires the “bath water” to be changed frequently because it gets contaminated in the application process. The EMPEL™ process applies the monomer solution directly to the fabric eliminating the padding process.  Removing the traditional wet padding from the GTT production process eliminates another source of pollution   produces no hazardous discharge, no waste, no off-gassing, and is non-toxic. We can now combine functional features to fabrics for different industries that were previously impossible using historic water-based finishes.
  3. Once the chemistry is cured into the polymer form and molecularly bonded to the fibers, no additional washing is required.

The environmental benefits of water free textile production are obvious. Logic demands that we adopt better production processes to protect the future of our water resources. GTT is UNCOMPROMISING in two ways, we will not produce products that do not OUTPERFORM the existing technical fabrics, nor will we use polluting or dangerous chemicals or manufacturing processes to make our products work better The GTT philosophy is simple, better products for a cleaner environment.  We think that giving people the best performance while cleaning up the environment should be the plan for the future.  Our best solution to avoid polluting water, don’t use any.

PFC FREE

GTT uses NO PFC chemistries EVER!  And neither should you.

Conventional water repellent treatments (DWRs) have relied on Fluorocarbon chemistries to add repellent properties to textiles.  They are applied to shoes, carpets, jackets, and a wide variety of consumer products. In the past they offered excellent water repellency and some oil repellency.  But like cigarettes from the past, everyone thought they were cool, worked great and caused no harm.

However, Fluorocarbon chemistries and PFC treated products are EXTREMELY DANGEROUS TO HUMANS because; 1- they accumulate in our bodies, 2- don’t break down over time, and 3- create a variety of serious health problems. In May 2016, the EPA issued a lifetime health advisory for PFOA after multiple studies showed it could harm humans. The effects, studied both in lab animals and by gathering data from large groups of people, showed that high levels of exposure may cause:

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2016-05/documents/pfoa_health_advisory_final_508.pdf

Another detailed study called the C8 Health Project reviewed the effects of long term PFOA exposure to 65,000 humans.  This Ohio valley population drank groundwater contaminated with Fluorocarbons from neighboring factories. The test results confirmed the same results.

American Journal of Epidemiology, Volume 176, Issue 10, 15 November 2012, Pages 909–917, https://doi.org/10.1093/aje/kws171

The textile industry has taken steps to reduce the use of long chain Fluorocarbons C8.  Many companies have turned to the shorter chain cousins C6 and C4 thinking they would be less toxic and still provide good performance.  Many scientists are saying that short chain Fluorocarbons C6 and C4 may have the same level of danger as C8 and additional problems because they are smaller and more mobile.  

https://greensciencepolicy.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/Myths-vs.-Facts-June-2018.pdf

Conclusion, PFCs are dangerous in all forms for many reasons.  GTT uses NO PFC chemistries and will not substitute potential hazardous chemicals that may cause other health or environmental issues in the future.

Certified and independently tested “Clean Chemistry

To ensure the highest level of environmental and human safety, GTT starts by independently testing and certifying the EMPEL™ foundation chemistry.  In addition to outside testing, the GTT lab founded and run by Dr Gary Selwyn (the inventor of the EMPEL™process) regularly performs tests that show a wide variety of fabrics in the market are being treated with hazardous chemistries. 

Currently GTT uses the thorough OEKO-TEX® testing methods. The experts from OEKO-TEX® cover in their extensive measures catalog for harmful substance testing and also check the relevance of future developments.

These standards include:

  • The regulations regarding prohibited azo dyes, formaldehyde, nickel etc. are included in the test catalog.
  • Chemicals harmful to health are also tested if they have not yet been statutorily regulated.
  • Requirements of Annexes XVII and XIV of the REACH Directive, and of the ECHA-SVHC Candidate List are covered by the test method.
  • The OEKO-TEX® laboratory tests include around 100 test parameters and take into account the intended use of the textiles. The more intensive the skin contact of a textile product, the stricter the limit values for each product class.

Once a chemistry is tested it can be qualified from class 1-4:

  • Product class I: Articles for babies and toddlers
  • Product class II: Articles used close to the skin
  • Product class III: Articles used away from the skin
  • Product class IV: Materials

Chemicals and dyes are then certified according to the ECO PASSPORT by OEKO-TEX®.

GTT Future testing and certification plans

The EMPEL™ technology is not just new chemistry, it is a comprehensive revolutionary manufacturing process that eliminates pollution throughout the process. At GTT we believe that the textile industry must move to a complete water free manufacturing process.

We are pressing to create new innovative performance solutions while we lead the industry in new clean production processes. Visiting a GTT facility often looks like someone’s clean kitchen. Because no water is used or waste stream is created, GTT can also certify our production processes as well as our chemistry.

GTT will continue our process to certify our chemistry and production process with the other leading independent certification company. The additional independent certifications are in the works, updates to follow here.

ABOUT

Green Theme Technologies, Inc. is a textile innovation company with the mission to create products that out-perform existing technologies while eliminating water usage and pollution.

CONTACT

We believe in our process and story and would love to share more with you. Please reach out.


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