Carbon Neutral Fashion Is A Small Club That More Brands Need To Join
Allbirds is the latest brand to make the step to reduce their carbon footprint
Fashion may not be the second most polluting industry in the world (that fact was debunked in 2017) but there’s no doubt that it’s still pretty bad. The production and manufacturing of clothing undoubtedly releases toxins into the environment, but when it’s the basis of your business model, you can’t just shut down production altogether. The next best thing is to go carbon neutral.
In order for to be considered carbon-neutral, the brand must offset the amount of damage they are doing to the environment by contributing to the betterment of that environment, such as investing in renewable energy projects or planting trees.
The shift to carbon neutrality might seem like common sense, given that a report published by the Ellen MacArther Foundation in 2017 revealed that fast fashion production was on a steady incline that doubled between 2005 and 2015. At the same time, the number of times clothing was worn before ending up in a landfill was on the decline.
In December, the United Nations released the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action. The charter, largely backed by designer Stella McCartney, commits to finding ways to reduce climate change that’s been at the fault of fashion. Fashion key players like H&M, adidas and Hugo Boss are among dozens of brands that have pledged to go carbon neutral by 2050.
While it is a step in the right direction, we’ll probably be underwater in 30 years, so here are three brands that are going carbon neutral right now:
Allbirds is a natural-wool shoe brand for men and women that was designed with simplicity, comfort and the environment in mind. It is only natural that they announced they will be going 100 per cent carbon-neutral this coming Earth Day, April 22. To celebrate their step in the right direction to reduce their carbon footprint, the brand will also be releasing a limited edition endangered bird shoe line with all proceeds going towards the National Audubon Society.
The LA-based Reformation is renowned in the fashion community for their sustainable fabrics and ethical factories and practices. A pioneer in the eco-friendly fashion community, it is no wonder they are carbon neutral — you can even purchase carbon stocks on their website. Their carbon offset is described “exchange” with organizations Brazilian Rosewood Amazon Conservation Project and the Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF) Water Restoration Program, where they match their quarterly carbon emissions with equal conservation.
This one might come as a surprise, but Aldo announced they were becoming the first certified carbon neutral fashion footwear and accessories company in September 2018. The Montreal company plans to offset carbon by investing in wind farms and hydroelectric projects in North America, Europe and China. Carbon offsetting is just one of initiatives Aldo has implemented, they also plan on introducing other sustainable efforts including smarter packaging and worker transport efficiency.