What are the environmental impacts of linen?
Main advantage of flax fabric is that since it has a cellulosic composition and is obtained from the plant source, it is biodegradable. However, the steps involved in the processing and manufacturing of flax fabric contributes to the environmental pollution.
The chemicals such as sulphuric acid, oxalic acid, etc are used in the process of retting of flax and these chemicals then runoff in the water bodies, thus polluting the water bodies. Although the process of chemical retting is less time-consuming it releases harmful and toxic chemicals therefore the manufactures should use the method of water retting for its safe environmental reasons. In addition, linen utilises about 6.4 liters of water in its lifecycle, as per the data stated by the European Confederation of Linen and Hemp.
The cultivation of flax also causes soil degradation leading to soil erosion and affects the quality of agricultural land.