Clothing – A Challenge for Recycling?


Panel discussion as part of the Uni at City Hall event series.


The RWTHextern Citizens' Forum and the City of Aachen will be hosting a panel discussion on “Textiles in the Circular Economy:  Does Our Clothing Pose a Sustainability Challenge?” The event is scheduled to take place Thursday, July 28, 2022, starting at 6 pm at Katschhof, Aachen.

Jens Tervooren from WDR will moderate the panel discussion. The panelistst are:

  • Professor Thomas Gries, Head of the Institut für Textiltechnik at RWTH Aachen University
  • Sibylle Keupen, Mayor of the City of Aachen
  • Heiko Thomas, Head of the Climate and the Environment, Municipal Operations and Buildings Department of the City of Aachen, and
  • Professor Marzia Traverso, Head of the Institute for Sustainability in Civil Engineering at RWTH Aachen University.

After food, textiles are the second most important consumer product in Germany: The average German has been estimated to use around 20 to 25 kilograms of textiles every year.  Clothing accounts for 75 percent of textiles used, the remainder being diapers, carpets, household textiles, and other products. However, only about one percent of textiles are recycled. What can we do to solve this problem? What can cities and communities do, what can science do? Is it possible to resume the local production of textiles in Germany on a large scale? Further, structural change processes may open up opportunities for change in the textile industry.

Admission to the event is free, and no registration is required.