WHY WE NEED TO DECARBONISE THE FASHION INDUSTRY NOW
We already know how much damage the fashion industry has done to the planet. We also know that the fashion industry is currently contributing up to 10% of global carbon emissions. On top of that, we also know that big brands can’t just throw loads and loads of money and make the problem disappear.
Popular Danish brand Ganni began working with the United Nations on their Sustainable Development Goals accelerator in the past year, they are aiming to create a carbon neutral capsule collection. Founder, Nicolaj Reffstrup, has set to work creating a collection that has not had any carbon emissions used in the process of creating the garment. Some of the processes involved in production have even helped to remove some of the greenhouse gases.
Today, Ganni Labs is working to help decrease the impacts across the entire business. Now they are starting to dip their toes into the rental market and now half of the brands materials are either recycled, organic, or certified, but they are aiming to be 100% within the next few seasons. For the brand, reaching carbon neutrality will always be a major priority.
From Nicolaj Reffstrup’s perspective “there’s no discussion. We need to get there, period. For me, behaving responsibly is a moral obligation. But it’s also an insurance policy. If you can’t create a carbon neutral collection or better than that in 10 years, then there’s no business for you.”
Like I said earlier, fashion accounts for 10% of global carbon emissions, if the Global Fashion Agenda is right, then the emissions levels will increase by 50% by 2030. This is why carbon levels are such a big thing and spoken about so much at the UN’s Fashion Charter as well as the G7 Fashion Pact. Both are major fashion coalitions aiming to make a big change to the fashion industry, and both are aiming for fashion to have net-zero emissions by 2050. The biggest challenge right now, is figuring out what the best method is to implement this across the entire industry; they are also trying to figure out if using programs for offsetting carbon, will be the most effective method to do this, whether that be tree planting or making brands look inward and review their carbon emissions.
Laila Petrie, is joint chair of the UN’s Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action as well as CEO of environmental organisation 2050, has spoken about how “decarbonisation is the only option for survival. It’s going to be vital to de-risk and to prepare your value chains and your customer for this altered reality where resources are limited and there’s increasing effects felt from climate change.”
If more brands start to agree with carbon neutrality, then these brands must reduce their carbon emissions, if this isn’t possible to do overnight then start funding projects to help remove carbon from the atmosphere. So far it has been the second option that has proven more popular. However like we said at the beginning, throwing money won’t make the problem go away.