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Can the humble T-shirt help save our planet? Well, this one right here just might


Climate change is a big problem that needs smart solutions. The Greenest T-shirt on the Planet is made from a new fabric that is 100 per cent plant-based, sustainable, compostable and biodegradable.

Kusaga Athletic will use the crowd-funding platform Kickstarter to launch The Greenest T-shirt on the Planet. The eco-friendly tee is designed to offer anyone who wears t-shirts a simple way to do something practical about climate change.

Kusaga Athletic co-founder Graham Ross says, “We all know climate change is a big problem, so big it’s hard to know what one person can do to make a difference.”

How can one t-shirt save the planet?

The Greenest T-shirt on the Planet is made from Kusaga Athletic’s 100 per cent plant-based and sustainable fabric ECOLITE™ which is softer than cotton, and with the same technical capabilities of polyester.

It is compostable and bio-degradable and better still, The Greenest T-shirt on the Planet uses less than one per cent of the water needed to manufacture a standard cotton tee.

Less than one per cent. Let that sink in for a minute…

“Not many people realise it can take 3,000 litres of water to make a single cotton t-shirt. With a staggering two billion t-shirts sold every year worldwide we figured it was a pretty good place to start to help mitigate climate change. We think given the choice between similar products, people will choose the option that’s better for the environment.” Ross said.

ECOLITE™ is one of a range of environmentally positive fabrics developed by Kusaga Athletic, others include ECOSOFT™, ECOMESH™ and ECODRY™. The company is focused on providing planet-friendly alternatives to traditional fabrics such as cotton and polyester.

The Greenest T-shirt on the Planet is Kusaga’s first direct to consumer retail offering. They currently supply eco-friendly apparel to Earth Hour Global/WWF and pioneering eco-events company Endurance Evergreen.

What is the story behind Kusaga Athletic?

Graham is an established serial entrepreneur who has founded and co-founded a number of businesses over the past two decades while his co-founder Matthew Ashcroft has held senior leadership positions in a number of global media corporations.

“Matt and I met whilst living and working in Singapore but our story really started in China – at the Great Wall Marathon of all places! Our friendship and a dream forged over 42 very hot kilometres and more than 5000 ancient steps,” Graham told Anthill.

Graham Ross and Matthew Ashcroft met at the Great Wall Marathon
Graham Ross and Matthew Ashcroft met at the Great Wall Marathon

“Two Aussies – athletes and fathers working in the TV industry – but I guess we were both looking for something with more meaning. With the physical challenge of the Great Wall conquered, we got to talking about an even bigger challenge – climate change.

“What could we do, as two regular guys, to help this massive problem and try and leave the world in a slightly better place for our kids?

“We honestly didn’t know where to start. Realistically how could we possibly make a difference to something so big? We eventually discovered the opportunity lay in the clothes we were wearing.

“Like most people, we didn’t know that it can take 3,000 litres of water to make just one cotton t-shirt, and that more than 2 billion t-shirts are sold every year worldwide. Not only that, huge amounts end up as landfill – in the UK for example, 350,000 tonnes of clothing piles up as landfill every single year.

“We set up Kusaga Athletic with the challenge to find planet friendly alternatives to cotton and polyester. After two years in R&D, we have developed, prototyped and trademarked four new sustainable fabrics. We imagined creating a clothing brand that causes minimal impact to the planet and then we did it.

“We know there are other people all over the world concerned about the planet. We believe that if we could harness those individuals and that if one person made a better choice for the environment and then another and another… well we might just start a movement.

UPDATE: The Kickstarter site is now live, check it out here.