What are the environmental impacts of nylon?
Sustainability is a major concern in the textile manufacturing sector. The textile industry, one of the largest contributors to environmental pollution. Nylon is a synthetic fiber derived from the petrochemicals which are non-biodegradable resulting in environmental degradation.
The synthetic polymers are accountable for environmental pollution such as emission of nitrous oxide during the nylon manufacturing process and other toxic gases. In addition, the emission of nitrous oxide is almost three hundred times more harmful than carbon dioxide.
Nylon is a man-made polyamide that utilises the fossil fuels leading to their depletion and the energy involved in the production process contributes towards global warming. It takes about 250 megajoules of energy to produce nylon fiber.
This fact cannot be neglected that growing demand for nylon would reduce fossil fuel very quickly and the method of extraction of these fuels via drilling and fracking is also hazardous to the biosphere.
Apart from that, the manufacturing of nylon is a process that requires a large amount of water to cool the filament extruded during the spinning process. Thus, synthetic fabrics in no way are contributing to a sustainable environment.