Eco-Friendly Rain Gear – Columbia Outdry Extreme Eco Jacket

The colder winter months have been bringing rain to many different parts of the United States and raingear has become a must for many venturing outdoors. For years, rain jackets have relied on a laminated fabric that helps water bead upon the surface of the jacket. However, the chemicals found in these waterproof membranes have a difficult time breaking down readily in the environment. That’s why Columbia has developed the Outdry Extreme Eco Jacket, made from 21 recycled plastic bottles and technology that does away with harmful chemicals without compromising performance.

The jacket is made without the use of harmful PFCs (perfluorinated compounds) commonly found in durable water repellent. The fabric is dye-free which saves over 13 gallons of water during the manufacturing process. It also reduces the amount of energy and chemicals used, making for an 80% savings when compared to the dyeing stage of traditional dyed fabric.

The 100% recycled polyester jacket also uses recycled components for its zippers and trim. When raw materials are used to make traditional polyester, the process requires a ton of energy and is highly dependent on oil. Using recycled polyester not only reduces the energy used to extract oil but also eases landfill burdens by helping keep plastic materials out of waste streams.

Beyond eco-conscious materials and manufacturing, Columbia takes it one step further with their Rethreads program. When the jacket comes to the end of its life, it can be donated at one of their flagship locations and it will be recycled and repurposed to create more eco-friendly products. 85% of clothing typically ends up in landfills and this is a way to help reduce waste and conserve energy.

For more information on the Extreme Eco Jacket and Columbia’s Rethread program, visit http://www.columbia.com/.

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