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How to Decipher “Sustainable Fashion” in 2020 (Harper's Bazaar)

Does this holiday season feel different? The world feels a little bit like it’s caving in on itself, no? In the past, this time of year would be all about fun parties and excitement about resolutions. This New Year, and looking at the decade ahead, feels uncomfortable and scary.

There are wildfires raging in California, Russia, Brazil, and Australia (did you see those heart-wrenching pictures of the burned koalas?), which make the latest reports coming out about the climate crisis becoming dangerously close to irreversible change all the more terrifying. Meanwhile, the country has never been more divided in modern history (not to mention the strikes taking place around the world), as issues that roiled below the surface for decades around gender, race, income inequality, education, medical and housing costs explode to the surface.

We’re not presented with many options when it comes to dealing with these headlines. We’re told to recycle (only to be told that it’s useless because much of that is going to landfill, anyway), vote when the time comes, use public transport when we can, and shop “sustainably”.

But when it comes to fashion sustainability, we are sent massively mixed signals. Does it mean local production, emerging designers, rented clothes, organic cotton, or clothing made from recycled bottles? It all seems overwhelming, and besides, what impact can we really have as just one person?

It is from this frustration and wanting to turn fear into action that colleagues and I came together to create the New Standard Institute, bringing leading scientists together to cut through the marketing noise to develop a meaningful, data-lead roadmap on turning an industry we love—fashion—into one that is in line with the environmental and social limits of our planet. Using this one central, culture defining, consumer-facing industry, we hope to set the tone for fashion and other industries on a path forward.

In the past year, in addition to pouring over all of the available research, I have followed the life of our clothes, from the cotton fields of Texas, to the yarn and fabric mills of China, to the cut and sew factories of Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, all the way to the second hand markets (and landfills) in Ghana, where much of our clothing ends up when we donate it.

We will be sharing more about this exploration and available research in the year to come, but we wanted to share with you the most critical insights and the resoundingly good news. (And my goodness, do we need good news). Below are the key takeaways.

1) Climate Change

Fashion contributes over 8 percent of all greenhouse gases and, if things continue as is, by 2050 more than 25 percent of the entire global carbon budget will go to this one industry.

The carbon hotspot is at the mills (the places that spin the fiber into yarn and weave that yarn into fabric). More than 75 percent of the carbon footprint in the entire lifecycle of our clothing takes place there. To make things super clear, a company is only doing “sustainability” if they are lowering the carbon footprint of their mills. Doing this isn’t rocket science; it’s a matter of bringing in consultants to make the mills more energy efficient and changing the energy supply to renewables (and away from sources like coal). Levi's is one of the very few companies making a serious commitment to do this type of work.

Read the full article on the Harper's Bazaar

2020年如何解读“可持续时尚”(Harper's Bazaar)












正是由于这种沮丧和希望将恐惧变成行动,我和我的同事们共同创建了 New Standard Institute,将领先








消息。 (天哪,我们需要好消息)。以下是关键要点。


时尚占所有温室气体的 8%以上,如果这种情况继续下去,到 2050 年,整个全球碳预算的 25%以上将用


碳热点在工厂(将纤维纺成纱线并将纱线织成织物的地方)。 在我们的服装整个生命周期中,超过 75%


持续性”工作。 这样做不是火箭科学; 这是要引进顾问以提高工厂的能源效率,并改变向可再生能源(以

及远离煤炭等能源)的能源供应的问题。 Levi's 是极少数认真从事此类工作的公司之一。

Read the full article on the Harper's Bazaar

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