From H&M to Chanel: More than 30 fashion companies join forces on eco-friendly Fashion Pact

Labels such as Prada and Nike have vowed to take steps to preserve the planet

Models present creations by German designer Karl Lagerfeld as part of his Spring/Summer 2019 women's ready-to-wear collection show for fashion house Chanel at the Grand Palais transformed as a beach scene during Paris Fashion Week in Paris, France, October 2, 2018. REUTERS/Stephane Mahe
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It's not known as the world's most green industry, but fashion labels of the world seem to be taking strides to rectify that.

More than 30 of the globe's largest fashion groups and brands have joined a new initiative, spearheaded by luxury conglomerate Kering, that pledges to fight the global climate crisis.

The Fashion Pact aims to reduce the industry’s negative impact on climate, biodiversity and the oceans, and will be presented to world leaders at the Group of Seven (G7) summit in France.

The 32 companies taking part represent an estimated 150 brands, including Chanel, Prada, Nike, H&M and Galeries Lafayette.

The sustainability-focused agreement includes commitments such as eliminating single-use plastics from packaging by 2030, curbing micro-fibre pollution and using 100 per cent renewable energy sources across operations by 2030.

All together, the companies that have signed the pact make up around 30 per cent of the industry, according to Business of Fashion. 

The initiative was created at the request of French President Emmanuel Macron, Kering revealed, who had called upon Kering's chief executive Francois-Henri Pinault to "bring together the leading players in fashion and textile, with the aim of setting practical objectives for reducing the environmental impact of their industry".

The pact's objectives also include creating zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.

The €1.5 trillion industry (Dh6.19tn) "is one of the most impactful and therefore should also have the power to play a pivotal role in leading the shift towards a more sustainable future", a Kering press release added.

French CEO of Kering, Francois-Henri Pinault speaks at the Elysee presidential palace in Paris on August 23, 2019, after taking part in a meeting of the G7 Advisory Council for Equality between Women and Men with French President and civil society representatives as part of the 'Day of Dialogue'. / AFP / GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT

According to the French Ministry of Ecology, the textile sector represents 6 per cent of global greenhouse gas emissions, as well as 20 to 35 per cent of the micro plastic in the ocean.

The pact also reveals a joint initiative to ensure fair wages and respectful working conditions, with a focus on “empowering small-hold producers and women in low-income countries”.

Signatories feature Hermès, Prada, Salvatore Ferragamo, Giorgio Armani, Burberry, Ralph Lauren, and Stella McCartney, though the latter's investor, Kering rival LVMH, has chosen not to take part.