A number of outdoor textiles are made from synthetic materials (polyester, acrylic…) which are themselves made from fossil materials.¹
BELOW ARE A LIST OF MONTAGNE VERTE’S SUGGESTIONS FOR ECO-RESPONSIBLE SKI EQUIPMENT
These fossil materials are used in large quantities: you need about 1.5kg of petrol to make a 1kg of polyester.
In order to turn fossil materials in to outdoor clothing, a large amount of chemical substances and solvents are needed. On top of that, whenever we wash our outdoor clothes, fibres made from these materials detach themselves, are washed away with the waste water. Sadly, these fibres don’t get filtered at water treatment plants.²
The chemical processes used to make our outdoor clothes also present risks to our health: certain substances can be noxious in situations where we sweat a lot (allergenic, toxic substances can be transmitted through reproduction or can be dangerous for foetuses, etc.)!³
Concerning our equipment, it’s important to know that making a ski is energy-intensive and requires non-ecological materials. In essence, skis are made of glue, injected foam, aluminium, steel, polyamide, polyethylene…
Luckily though, alternatives are being developed in the textile industry (recycled textiles, bio-sourced textiles, textiles made from recycled plastic bottles, etc.) and also in sports equipment such as skis and wax.
Sources: (1) WeDressFair: Qu’est-ce que le polyester?, (2) Edenred: Quel est l’impact écologique des vêtements ?, (3) ANSES: Évaluation des effets sensibilisants ou irritants cutanés des substances chimiques présentes dans les articles chaussants et textiles d’habillement, 2018.