To fix fashion’s sustainability problem, we need a little less conversation and a little more action

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

You can’t have a conversation about fashion these days without touching on the topic of sustainability. The industry’s environmental impacts — from greenhouse gas emissions to microplasticsbiodiversity loss and water ecotoxicity — are well-known by consumers and companies alike. But awareness isn’t enough. All eyes are on brands to usher in a new era for fashion, one where industry operates within the means of the planet.

So, how are they measuring up? Spoiler alert: far from good enough. Over the last few years, the number of companies committing to set science-based targets, as well as multi-stakeholder initiatives, have skyrocketed. A number of coalitions such as Fashion Pact, the United Nations Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action, Make Fashion Circular and Fashion Conveners have formed to tackle the industry’s impacts on climate, biodiversity, land-use change and more. It’s an encouraging sign and a step in the right direction, but in this decade for action, good intentions are simply not enough.

Given the scope and speed of change needed to transform fashion, the follow-through — translating these good intentions into tangible actions with meaningful impact — is where brands are falling short. Even before the coronavirus pandemic hit, the industry’s slow progress was starting to raise eyebrows.

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