What are the environmental impacts of kapok fiber?
As a kind of natural biodegradable fiber, kapok production does not necessarily have environmental impacts. However, since the kapok fiber has low cohesion property, they are difficult to be woven alone but kapok blends are available with cotton that can contribute towards less water consumption.
One of the drawbacks to be discussed is that the process of retting that involves microbial growth, pollutes the water and releases methane gas which promotes greenhouses emission and it is said that the process releases 28 times more carbon dioxide.
But the advantage of kapok fibers is that the buoyant property of the fibers has substituted the use of polyester as a filling or stuffing material in pillows and bedding contributing to a better environment.