Today, the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals Programme releases its comprehensive review of wastewater discharge guidance in the current textile industry.
The research gathered shows a wide range in discharge regulations and measuring methods that differ from nation to nation, between guidelines published by brands and amongst multi-brand consortia.
Developing a single, unified discharge guideline and standardised analytical methods for monitoring wastewater quality would benefit the textile industry greatly and will drive momentum towards meeting the programme’s zero discharge goal. This review is a preliminary step towards establishing a global industrywide baseline.
“To support industrywide wastewater treatment guidance, the ZDHC programme has added the development of a unified wastewater discharge quality guideline as a new area of focus,” says Executive Director Frank Michel.
“Whilst working towards zero discharge of hazardous chemicals in wastewater will require continued collaboration between all parts of the global textile supply chain, a unified approach can further align the industry’s shared commitment to improve human health and the environment."
Keeping the goal of zero discharge firmly in mind, the ZDHC programme will work with key collaborators to formulate a discharge guideline that will update widely used wastewater quality guidelines. New wastewater quality guidelines will focus on ZDHC MRSL-listed chemical substances and conventional wastewater parameters equally to reduce or eliminate the risk of releasing MRSL-banned substances.
A stepwise approach begins with adoption of the ZDHC MRSL to control chemical input. The ZDHC Environmental Audit is an important second step to ensure processes are controlled properly, followed by effluent discharge controls to ensure our desired goal of zero discharge.