A Swedish power plant not far from Stockholm aiming to become fossil fuel-free by 2020 has burnt tons of discarded H&M’s clothes this year.
Only in 2017, the power station has burned about 15 tons of discarded clothing from retail chain H&M in addition to some 400,000 tons of burned garbage to supply power to about 150,000 households, as reported by Bloomberg.
At its peak in 1996, the facility that now looks toward completely eliminating the use of fossil fuels in slightly more than two years, burned as much as 650,000 tons of coal.
“For us it’s a burnable material,” said Jens Neren, head of fuel supplies at Malarenergi AB, which owns and operates the 54-year-old plant in Vasteras, about 100 kilometers to the northwest of Stockholm. “Our goal is to use only renewable and recycled fuels.”
Malarenergi has an agreement with the neighboring city of Eskilstuna to burn their rubbish, including items from H&M’s central warehouse in the same city that are unsafe for wearing.
“It is our legal obligation to make sure that clothes that contain mold or do not comply with our strict restriction on chemicals are destroyed,” H&M’s head of communications, Johanna Dahl, told Bloomberg. “H&M does not burn any clothes that are safe to use.”
A leader in eliminating the use of fossil fuels, Sweden has apparently come with an excellent solution for the mountains of discarded fast-fashion items piling up across the globe.