You can think of your wardrobe in terms of practicality and individual style. Or you can enjoy what is jokingly called retail therapy, buying clothes just for the pleasure of novelty. But you probably give little thought to how your clothes are connected to a huge global industry.
It’s no secret that this is the case, especially for so-called fast fashion, and it’s not hard to find an article that summarizes the industry’s issues. We’ll take a closer look at why it’s so hard to solve and how to find a solution.
“Fashion has a misinformation problem. It’s bad for the environment.” Start with this article by his Alden Wicker on Vox. This article explains how difficult it is to get reliable data, including the numbers presented in the article below. (The Wicker website has more interesting articles on the subject.)
“Earth Day Outfit: Washed Green’s Fast His Fashion Suit.” This story of his Nur Gantus, published in Energy Monitor, is both in Wicker’s use of numbers and in his criticism of the industry. It can take the place of many stories.
The New York Times published a series of articles on “Responsible Fashion” for 2022. His next two are of particular interest.
“New Laws to Eliminate the Fear of Shopping,” Elizabeth Peyton explains some of the policies proposed and approved in the European Union and the United States to help mitigate the damage caused by global fashion. It’s helpful.
“Fashion giants are reimagining plastic as good for the planet.” This stunning piece from Hiroko Tabuchi will make you think twice about fabrics when making your next purchase. A similar, complementary look at many of the issues around her Higg index and other standards used by the industry for self-regulation is provided by Rachel Donald in her The Intercept (no paywalls). “
“Lululemon’s Olympic Challenge to Reduce Emissions”. Phil McKenna (Inside Climate News) uses this example beautifully to understand what companies can do easily, what is much harder, and where greenwashing is needed. I’m here.
“The beauty industry is a climate disaster.” Emily Atkin’s interview with her Jessica DeFino in her newsletter, “Heated,” is another revealing piece of her news about the industry involved.
Finally, if you’re interested in reading and learning more about sustainable fashion, the Carbon Almanac has an extensive list of resources.