At the start of every season, fashion magazines are full of glossy spreads encouraging consumers to splash out on brand new clothes. But at what cost?
The United Nations calls the $2.75 trillion fashion industry “an environmental and social emergency”. The industry produces nearly 20% of the world’s waste water and around 10% of global carbon emissions. It takes 20,000 litres of water to make just one T-shirt and one pair of jeans.
The scale of consumption has led to climate activist group Extinction Rebellion calling on people to boycott fashion for a full year, while in the UK, Oxfam is asking customers not to buy any new clothes during Second Hand September.
Here are 4 more things you can do to shop sustainably…
1) Always read the label
The recently signed G7 Fashion Pact commits some of the world’s biggest fashion companies to reducing the industry’s impact on the environment.
Some leading brands already produce sustainable lines, but a label certifying clothing as organic or sustainable is a good sign that it has an ecologically friendly background.