The 2020 Circular Fashion Pledge, an initiative launched by sustainability consultant Adam Siegel on April 23 this year during Fashion Revolution Week and just after the 50th Anniversary of Earth Day, is pushing for industry-wide commitment to circularity.
Amid the economic uncertainty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, 117 small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) have signed the pledge, recognising fashion’s significant contribution to climate change and environmental pollution and committing to take action to substantially reduce waste generation to achieve UN Sustainable Development Goal target 12.5 by 2030.
The pledge focuses on three main circular actions and signatories are encouraged to roll at least one of them out by the end of the calendar year to accelerate positive change:
- Enable take-back or resale – Launch at least one method or partnership to enable customers to send-back or resell their used items.
- Increase recycled content – Increase the total percentage of certified recycled content or scrap fabric by 10% in their top five selling items.
- Design for durability – Increase the use of non-blended materials, and/or modularity and repairability in their top five selling items.
Popular sustainable fashion brands such as Asket, Nisolo and Outerknown have also signed on. “Together, we are the path toward a cleaner, more dynamic, creative, and quality-driven fashion industry,” the website states.
According to Sustainable Brands, of the 117 brands that have signed on to the pledge, 62% are launching take-back/resale initiatives, 60% will increase recycled content, and 50% will focus on designing for durability. Nearly half of the cohort have committed to two circular actions.
But the Pledge isn’t just for fashion businesses, the service industry and individual customers can also pledge to help drive a circular economy by offering support services and shopping from fashion brands committed to circularity.
With apparel consumption projected to rise by 63% to 102 million tons in 2030 and less than one percent of material used to produce clothing is recycled into new textiles and fibres, the 2020 circular fashion pledge has come at a crucial time in consumer culture, as COVID-19 forces shoppers to reevaluate spending priorities and as the backlash against fast fashion continues to grow.
The pledge is aiming for 1,000 signatories this year. To sign the pledge, visit www.2020circularfashion.com.
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Cover image by Ksenia Chernaya.