Primark, Next, M&S, John Lewis and Asos have all committed to reduce their carbon emmissions by 50 per cent and reduce the aggregate water footprint of new products by 30 per cent by 2030.
The retailers have signed up to be apart of a 10 year voluntary agreement, coined Textiles 2030, launched by non-profit organisation WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme).
Signatories of the agreement will focus on three main areas: agreeing good practice principles that focus on durability, recyclability and minimising waste, implementing circular business models and establishing partnerships to supply and use recycled fibres.
The agreement was launched as part of a sustainability proposal drive by the government, announced last month.
“I’ve been impressed by the way business has committed to reducing the environmental impact of its products and striving for net zero,” WRAP’s chief executive Marcus Gover said.
“We have been working with business to develop Textiles 2030 to drive forward the sector-wide change needed to redress how we use textiles.”
The new scheme follows on from WRAP’s previous Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP) which was launched in 2012, an agreement signed by over 90 brands, retailers and trade bodies to reduce the industry’s carbon footprint.
“They clearly see this as core to their business models and essential for building back better as they recover from the pandemic,” Gover added.
“Our research shows that public demand is there for clothes made more sustainably, and not disposable fashion, so the time is right for this transformation.
“With clothing having the fourth largest impact on the environment after transport, housing and food we simply cannot afford for sustainability not to be the next big thing in fashion.”