Lendager TWC Presents: Rethinking Textiles.


Every year more than 40.000 tons of textiles are burned in Denmark alone. And the textile industry is considered one of the most polluting industries in the world.

In the same time, the building industry accounts for up to 40 % of the worlds CO2 emissions, most of which comes from the production of building materials.

What if we could turn those two problems into potentials?
First of all, by minimizing waste – designing new materials with the waste already here – and in the end create more circular and livable cities.

Lendager Group is a consultancy, architecture firm and a pioneer within the circular economy. Everything we do is centred around designing the world of tomorrow with the waste of today while working towards a world with no waste.

In this specific case, Lendager has initiated a textile network of stakeholders across the value chain, who are all aboard the journey towards becoming a regenerative business.

The project has been running for two years and has conceptualized and tested several solutions, some of which are described below.

We do however want to broaden the scope and are welcoming new unique ideas to this major issue.

Keywords: Reduce, reuse, recycle.

Innovation Challenge:

Rethink the textile industry to fit the 2030 global goals – How might we make it circular?

The textiles are mainly a combination of polyester and cotton in 60/40 %. This creates a fraction of materials that are difficult to separate into clean materials.

The market for re-used/cycled textiles is up-an-coming. Creating products from our generated waste is a great step in the way but setting up system changes is key – the earlier we can intercept, the better.

The amount of thrown out textiles is enormous – think big, as the amount of material needs to match the product market. The scale is key while ensuring competitiveness.

Different kinds of change create different kinds of impact. Generally, it can be categorized in a cascading manner:

  1. Reduce
  2. Reuse
  3. Recycle

The needs of the users change greatly from which angle you view the problem. We encourage you to c either end-users, stores, producents or recyclers to truly define what issues they have.

Key questions:

  • How will/should the city of the future handle its vast amount of thrown out textiles from an input and output perspective?
  • How might different brands take responsibility in collaboration with end-users?
  • What possible products can recycled textiles be upcycled into?


Textiles are mainly a combination of polyester and cotton in 60/40 ratio – focus on these.

Think of a house as a material bank – while the technology currently is not there to recycle the textiles back into new fibres, we can use buildings as a material deposit which should be easy to take apart and recycle.

We discourage the creation of isolation materials due to strict/outdated regulations. So far acoustic panels have proven to be a promising solution, however, this is already explored in great details, and might therefore not be the best direction to go.

Try to go through each of the reduce/use/cycle and define issues, possibilities and opportunities in each of the categories –reach out to stakeholders as soon as you can.

Follow our TIME model for quick evaluation below:


https://www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/our-work/activities/make-fashion-circular/report – Ellen MacArthur publications concerning the fashion industry

Tiny.cc/fibres – the main Ellen MacArthur report

https://www.gate21.dk/nyhed/fra-gamle-underhylere-til-nye-byggematerialer/ – Our report and work (In Danish!):

For further inquiries about this challenge brief please contact:

Morten Risom (Position Consultant) Email:Emmri@lendager.com

Extra resources

  • Amager Resource Center
  • AffaldPlus
  • Your friends and family (They are great for different views, especially for end-user perspectives – and are more easily reached out to)
  • Red Cross
  • SIPTex (Recycling station in Sweden)
  • SOEX (Recycling station in Germany – and other countries)
  • Renewcell (developing fibre-to-fibre chemical recycling)