Fashion unites on a call to action for COP26

By Fashion Revolution

1 month ago

COP26 is an exciting and timely opportunity for the world’s leaders to unite for the first time since the pandemic and reflect upon the impacts humanity is having on the earth’s finite resources and population, with solutions on how we can address these issues in the short amount of time we have to resolve the climate crisis. 

Any policy agenda which addresses these issues, must look at the fashion industry, which if it was a nation-state, would rank as the 7th largest economy. 

At the heart of the industry is the global supply chain, with workers and materials from every corner of the globe inextricably linked and connected across complex trade routes. These workers and our environment have been repeatedly exploited by harmful practices across the industry, but sustainable practitioners and leaders continue to develop new innovations in combination with a return to heritage practices, to address these impacts with creative solutions. A push for greater transparency has developed innovations including lean manufacturing, unions are being formed and flourishing, and regenerative fashion practices to counteract the harm that dyes and materials have caused to soils and rivers.

The resourcefulness and creativity to tackle climate change exists already within the industry, but requires the support of world leaders to recognise the potential it has to contribute to resolving the climate crisis.

In a unified message, the fashion industry and civil society organisations asks the world’s leaders to commit to the following recommendations:

1) Collective action to achieve net zero emissions by no later than 2050
2) Resourcefulness in waste elimination
3) Increase responsibility by businesses towards their global supply chains
4) Support skills development in education to encourage children to learn the necessary skills to make, repair and reuse their clothes
5) Frame any solutions to the climate emergency around business models which shift the focus from profit and loss, to a just transition towards the well-being economy

It is only by uniting in these shared ambitions that we can avoid an off-shoring of emissions, exploitation and degradation of resources and workers. The time is now for our world’s leaders to make these commitments and ensure that the fashion industry, as such a key part of our global economy, is a prominent part of the solution, as much as it has been a key part of the problem. The recent report by the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Ethics and Sustainability In Fashion “Cleaning Up Fashion”, which collated qualitative and quantitative evidence, as well as expert insights, alongside other reports such as Fashion Revolution’s annual Transparency Index have generated a wealth of evidence, insights and solutions. Now we are calling on the world’s leaders to engage and act, before it is too late.

Signatories:

Fashion Roundtable, Fashion Revolution, Centre for Sustainable Fashion, Common Objective, Eco-Age, The Sustainable Angle, Maisie Allum, Anti Copying in Design (ACID), Sandy Black, Boncamila Limited, BoyWonder, Molly Bruce-Gardyne, Fiona Carter, Circulatam | 7191, Comitato Lady Lawyer Village, Community Clothing, Connor Hill Co. | Circular Brand Solutions, Deborah Cure Yonace, DEPLOY London, Dvora Photography, Fashion Capital, Fashion Enter, Fashion Impact Fund, Fashion Takes Action, Future Fabrics Expo, Hubbub, Debbie Huntley, Justice In Fashion, Lab 2030, Labour Behind the Label, Lady Lawyer Fashion Archive, Lady Lawyer Foundation, Erin Lewis, Make it British, Minycled, Monty & Co, Mike Musial, New Standard Institute, No Sweat, Other day , Phoebe English, Pipet Design, Ran by nature, Rplanet, Amanda Sellers, Lucinda Shand, Sustainable & Social, Sustainable Fashion Scotland, Kolbra Sveinbjornsson, The Partnership, The Right Project, The Trampery, VICKISARGE, Wardrobe Crisis, Amelia Windsor

Download the press release