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New project will help the textile sector to reduce its environmental impact

A new project will aim to transform the UK’s fast fashion culture into one where products are made sustainably and then re-used or recycled. 

The Textiles 2030 project is backed by the government and has signatures from John Lewis, Primark, Sainsbury’s and Marks & Spencer.

The University of Leeds School of Design will provide expertise to support organisations such as clothing brands and recycling organisations as they set targets, measure the impact of products and track progress towards national targets as part of the initiative.

The environmental targets are:

  • Cut carbon by 50%, sufficient to put the UK textiles sector on a path consistent with limiting global warming to 1.5°C, in line with the Paris Agreement on climate change and achieving Net Zero by 2050 at the latest;
  • Reduce the aggregate water footprint of new products sold by 30%.

This target-based approach will be used so that textiles businesses set tough targets, measure impact and track progress on both an individual business basis, and towards national targets and public reporting.

Marcus Gover, CEO of WRAP,  a non-governmental organisation who is leading the project, said: ‘The UK Parliament has investigated the textiles sector twice in recent years and is now looking at UK fashion companies to act.

‘Textiles 2030 is about transforming textiles and creating a fashion sector fit for the future. We need fast, effective action from businesses more than ever.

‘Brand and retail signatories must show their commitment by signing up to Textiles 2030. Businesses who fail to engage will be noticeable by their absence.’

Environment minister Rebecca Pow added: ‘It is time for businesses across the textiles sector to join Textiles 2030 and play their part at this critical time for the planet.

‘Through Textiles 2030 we invite your commitment to work with WRAP, like-minded businesses and other partners towards a thriving, sustainable, circular UK textiles sector. I would like to see every CEO involved in this initiative.’

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