Abandoned fishing nets, also known as "ghost nets", have become a huge danger to marine life. In fact, these nets account for 46% of all ocean plastic. Scary, right? While we’re all out here talking about eliminating plastic straws, there’s an even greater risk to our waters. Now, please don’t get this wrong — we absolutely believe in the elimination (or at the very least, a significant reduction) of single-use plastics. We simply feel it’s important to highlight the other, perhaps less known, pollutant of our vast blues and what's being done about it. Enter ECONYL®.
ECONYL® has become a leading name in conscious fashion over the last few years, and in the world of sustainable swimwear, it reigns. Yet as much as this fabric is rapidly growing in popularity, we suspect there are many of you out there asking “what the heck is ECONYL®?” — we certainly weren’t familiar with it until we started down the road to building Copper Bottom.
Created by Italian firm Aquafil, ECONYL® is a regenerated nylon made entirely from pre and post-consumer synthetic waste products, including abandoned fishing nets, carpets and industrial plastic. It is equal in quality to virgin nylons, yet has a significantly lower impact on the environment. For every 10,000 tonnes of ECONYL® raw material created, we:
- Eliminate 12.6 thousand tonnes of waste
- Save 70,000 barrels of crude oil
- Avoid 42,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions
In collecting nylon waste from our oceans and landfills to create a new product that can be recycled over and over again, we create a closed loop system that reduces our impact on the planet. In short, using ECONYL® allows us to create new products without consuming new resources.
While brands around the world are using ECONYL® to create sustainably-made products, what we loved most about this material is how close it is to home for us. While it may be reasonably well-known that the fabric is made it Italy, our neighbour to the west, it was even more exciting for us to learn that the first depolymerization system was introduced in Ljubljana, Slovenia, right here where our swimsuits are manufactured. Today, used fishing nets are collected, cleaned and reprocessed in Ajdovščina, 50km southwest of Ljubljana.
For us, working with this fabric was a no brainer. Our Joshua Brief are made with 100% ECONYL® -- soft, luxurious and supportive. Look great and feel great about purchasing sustainable swimwear — need we say more?