Did you ever imagine your extra hair being used to help the environment? Over 200,000 U.S. hair salons and pet groomers cut about two pounds of either hair or fur, PER DAY! Matter of Trust found a resourceful way to use these and other hair donations to make environmentally friendly “booms” (essential for “sandbagging” a beach to keep sands clean) and “waddles” (used in storm drain cages to prevent oil spill out). The collected donated fibers and hair clippings are felted into non-toxic mats or placed inside recycled pantyhose to help soak up waste residue from major oil spills or motor oil contamination. Hair, fur, fleece and feather fibers have absorbing properties that help soak up oil quickly. This unfortunately can have its toll on wildlife that live near an oil spill and cause their fur or feathers to be covered in oil residue.
The eco-alternative proposed by Matter of Trust is a more efficient, renewable and natural method than the standard Haz Mat disposal method of incineration or transporting it to landfills. After all of the donations are gathered, Matter of Trust coordinates a safe and hands-on solution with surrounding communities to assist in the cleaning of contaminated waterways and storm drains. This organization is expanding their U.S. locations by the Gulf Coast, Great Lakes, East Coast and West Coast to decrease shipping distances for donations, which would reduce the overall carbon footprint. This growth will create jobs and assisting in the prevention of fiber clippings from a waste stream; while simultaneously promoting recycling practices and providing educational opportunities for our youth on various sustainable topics. Interested in becoming involved? Here are a few items this non-profit organization accepts as donations: ponytails, boxes, long braids, loose hair or other fibers, burlap sacks, nylon stockings, shrimp bags and so much more!