(COPENHAGEN)

It is time for the multi-trillion dollar clothing industry to look at itself in the mirror and decide what it needs to do to become eco-friendly. In America a staggering 85% of apparel is ending up in landfill, with the materials used to produce them woefully incompatible with efforts to shift towards a sustainable planet.

To provide direction, and building on the New Plastics Economy programme it introduced last year, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation is launching the Circular Fibres Initiative. The new project was announced today by Dame Ellen MacArthur at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit.

“The way we produce, use, and reprocess clothing today is inherently wasteful, and current rising demand increases the negative impacts. The Circular Fibres Initiative aims to catalyse change across the industry by creating an ambitious, fact-based vision for a new global textiles system, underpinned by circular economy principles, that has economic, environmental, and social benefits, and can operate successfully in the long term,” she said.

The collaborative project has the backing of some major international stakeholders, including H&M, NIKE and the C&A Foundation.

Anna Gedda, Head of Sustainability, H&M Group, added: “Our 100% circular vision and our goal to only use recycled or other sustainably sourced materials by 2030 plays a key role in our sustainability agenda. We are aware that our vision means a big change on how fashion is made and enjoyed today and if we want to take the lead in this challenge, collaboration and accelerating innovation and circular systems together with the industry is crucial.  The Circular Fibres Initiative will define a shared vision for a new global textile system and it will be an important foundation for collaboration to accelerate the journey towards a circular textile industry.”