Textile industry is using huge quantity of chemicals for its processing. Large amounts of commodity chemicals used in the textile industry are contaminated with potentially hazardous substances that routinely end up in wastewater. Some of these substances are phthalates, chlorobenzene, toluene and other restricted chemicals.
Commonly used chemicals such as salts, soda ash, organic and inorganic acids, peroxide and caustic soda – which are often by-products of other industries – can be laced with potentially hazardous substances. The safety of specialty textile dyes, pigments and auxiliaries has long been under the microscope. Traded on the open market by dealers, and often repackaged under different trade names, these bulk commodity chemicals are often bought based on price only with price being directly related to the purity of the product.
Reports of a new potential huge source of hazardous contaminants in textile wastewater will come as a shock to many apparel brands and retailers. Identification of the problem could also help the textile sector to identify unknown sources of wastewater contaminants that have puzzled the industry for many years.