Guidebook identifies climate actions apparel manufacturers can take to promote global decarbonization; lists WSP USA as a recommended service provider.
Submitted by WSP
In 2018, United Nations Climate Change (UNCC) drafted its Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action (the Charter), which includes ambitious climate goals, such as net zero emissions within the fashion industry by 2050.
The Charter was drafted specifically for fashion industry stakeholders with initiatives and goals that will enable the fashion industry to take a leadership role in mitigating the worst impacts of climate change.
Beyond specific emission reduction targets, the Charter includes commitments aimed to inform and drive emissions reductions, such as alignment with the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi), partnering with the finance community and transitioning away from coal-fired heat and power generation. Since the release of the charter, stakeholders have further worked to outline key actions and practices that will guide signatories towards net zero by 2050.
The Charter also targets a 30 percent reduction in global scope 1, 2 and 3 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2030 as a mid-point towards net zero emissions by 2050.
In September, the Charter’s decarbonization and GHG emissions reduction working group released its Climate Action Playbook (the Playbook), which outlines best practices and key strategies to meet the Charter’s carbon-related commitments. The Playbook is designed to help apparel sector brands, retailers, and suppliers identify and prioritize actionable steps toward ambitious climate action.
Topics covered in the Playbook include:
These topics are designed to enable organizations to reduce GHG emissions across their value chain. As evidenced in many apparel sector GHG inventories, most of the impact and subsequent opportunity is in the value chain (i.e., scope 3 emissions).
Within the sector’s value chain, emissions are concentrated in purchased goods and services, such as the impact associated with production of a brand’s products; and transportation and distribution, such as, the impact associated with shipment and storage of finished goods.
Previewing the Playbook
To preview the Playbook, WSP USA summarized five key emission reduction opportunities focused on these areas of the value chain:
Several signatories of the Charter have already started engaging their suppliers to reduce emissions. For example, eight brands have partnered with IFC’s PaCT program to help suppliers identify and implement renewable energy, energy efficiency and water savings projects. Brands are also starting to develop and grow re-commerce models to keep products in circulation longer.
Over the next 3-5 years, we expect to see increased collaboration among brands and suppliers, with these efforts further driving emissions reductions. We also expect to see an increase in companies leveraging the SBTi guidance as the organization moves towards defined criteria for Net Zero targets.
WSP is a global business providing management and consultancy services to the built and natural environments. The firm’s expertise includes environmental remediation and urban planning, engineering of iconic buildings, design of sustainable transportation networks, development of the energy sources of the future, and implementation of new ways of extracting essential resources. It is one of the world’s leading professional service firms, with 15,000 employees based in more than 300 offices in 35 countries. From offices across the USA, our environmental professionals are part of an international team of specialists that draws on best practices and brings solutions to our clients’ most difficult business and technical challenges.
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