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Facilitating a Circular Economy for Textiles

Facilitating a Circular Economy for Textiles

As part of a NIST initiative on Facilitating a Circular Economy for Textiles, we are planning to host a workshop to discuss challenges, gaps, and needs regarding textile circularity.  The workshop participants, consisting of industrial, academic, nonprofit, and government stakeholders will discuss means for creating value via the circular economy, and among other issues, what data and standards might be necessary to accomplish this goal. 

Potential topics for the workshop include:

  • Brand perspectives on textiles and the circular economy (e.g., consumer opinions on circularity, marks or certification of circular processes)
  • Technical challenges and needs for chemical recycling of textiles (e.g., availability of methods, feedstock contamination)
  • Technical challenges and needs for mechanical recycling of textiles (e.g., feedstock availability, feedstock contamination)
  • Challenges associated with collection, recycling, and reuse of textiles (e.g., collecting through municipal recycling facilities, used clothing resale market)
  • Environmental impacts of textile waste (e.g, microfiber pollution, consumer advocacy groups perspectives)
  • Government viewpoints for textile recycling (e.g., relevant regulations on a federal, state, or local level)  


Time (EST) Tuesday, September 21 Wednesday, September 22 Thursday, September 23
10:00 - 10:45 AM Plenary 1: Current landscape, bottlenecks, and critical gaps Plenary 2: Consumer Challenges and Opportunities 

Plenary 3: Role of Policy and Legislative Approaches

10:45 - 12:00 PM Session 1: Boundary-Spanning Tools to Facilitate a CE for Textiles Session 3: Challenges to Mechanical and Chemical Recycling of Textiles Session 5: Brand Responsibility and Best Practices
12:00 - 12:45 PM Lunch
12:45 - 2:00 PM Session 2: Challenges with Collection, Reuse, Repair of Textiles

Session 4: Environmental Impacts of Textiles

Session 6: Legal and Regulatory Barriers and Opportunities
2:00 - 3:00 PM Roundtable A: Data, Standards, & Terminology Roundtable B: Sorting & Collection Roundtable C: Market Development Roundtable A: Metrics & Measurements Roundtable B: Reuse & Repair Roundtable C: Supply Chain Enablers Roundtable A: Framework, Models, & Tools

Roundtable B: Mechanical & Chemical Recycling

Roundtable C: Policy Approaches and Needs


  • Marisa Adler, Resource Recycling Systems (RRS) 

  • Shahana Althaf, Yale University 

  • Tonny Colyn, The Salvation Army Canada & National Assoc Charitable Textile Recycling 

  • Matteo Magnani, Ellen MacArthur Foundation 

  • Jackie King, Secondary Materials and Recycled Textiles Assoc. (SMART) 

  • Scott Cynamon, Cyntex 

  • Jana Hawley, University of North Texas 

  • Yong Li, Eastman Chemical Company 

  • David Bender, Circular Polymers 

  • Youjiang Wang, Georgia Tech University 

  • Kim Hiller, Kansas State University 

  • Yuan Yao, Yale University 

  • Natalie Banakis, Patagonia 

  • Joanne Brasch, California Product Stewardship Council 

  • Additional speakers to be announced


View/Download Agenda (PDF)

Created May 19, 2021, Updated July 21, 2021