15 - 21 November, 2021
The two weeks of negotiations, involving nearly 200 countries, that was the COP26 has wrapped up for another year.
But did the 2021 conference do anything towards mitigating the effects of global warming?
Here is a quick overview of what the conference did achieve:
Signing of a new global agreement, the Glasgow Climate Pact by nearly 200 countries, which will focus on reducing the worst impacts of climate change. This includes:
Providing more financial aid to poorer nations that contribute the least, but suffer the most from climate change.
Pledging to reduce (or should I say "phase down") the use of coal by over 40 countries somewhere in the 2030’s. The greenhouse gases produced by the burning of coal is considered the single biggest contributor to climate change.
Acknowledgement of the contribution of fossil fuels to climate change (a big contributor to CO2 emissions) for the first time since these conferences began twenty six years ago. You could take that as a small win, yeah?!
Call to end (eventually) fossil fuel subsidies that artificially lower the price of coal, oil or natural gas.
Pledge to stop deforestation by 2030 by over 100 countries (including Brazil, which has cut down huge stretches of the Amazon rainforest).
Signing of the Global Methane Pledge by over 100 countries, which aims to cut methane emission by 30% by 2030.
Increased electrification, with the phasing out of gasoline and diesel powered cars and vans by 2040.
These pledges are not legally binding. So here's hoping that all this talk turns into real action, and that it's not just “blah, blah blah” as Greta would say!
For more on this, check out the following articles:
Considering we all wear clothes, we all have a responsibility to continue to stay informed and take action when it comes to our clothing's contribution to climate change.
Therefore, to get us thinking, I thought I would share some useful resources that I stumbled across this week, detailing how we can personally get educated and involved.
Taking action on fashion and the climate crisis from Fashion Revolution provides some feasible ways (including links), on how we can personally take action, from simply writing to brands or policy makers, joining a group, or switching up a few of our habits.
Fashion education in a time of climate emergency from the London College of Fashion, Centre for Sustainable Fashion, provides insight into what fashion education should include, while also suggesting some sustainable fashion open-access courses (one of which I can personally recommend).
If you are still feeling helpless, check out 99 Ways To Fight Climate Change from The Good Trade. Their suggestions for joining the collective fight against climate change will suit any budget, schedule, or energy level.
Take a watch
Trees are super important in the fight against climate change. They help capture carbon dioxide, storing carbon themselves, and in the soil, while releasing oxygen into the atmosphere. Therefore, the fact that over 100 world leaders have committed to stop deforestation, has to be seen as a huge positive, and a big step in the right direction.
But what role can fashion play in preserving and restoring the world’s forests?
I recommend starting with this short clip to find out, then take a look at the following recommended reading!
Take a read
As the previous clip and the Canopy article Style Doesn’t Have to Cost the Earth: New Campaign Shows That Packaging And The Fashion Industry Can Go ‘Circular Chic’ Today highlights, trees are cut down for the fashion industry for both fabrics (e.g. viscose and rayon) and the very paper packaging that transports our clothing.
But better alternatives are available that address this loss of forests and biodiversity, mitigating the impacts of climate change. One such organisation turning that talk of last week into real action is Canopy. Through the launch of Circular Chic, alongside change makers working at the intersection of fashion and environmental activism, this campaign is using the very materials we waste to make new fashion fabrics, and paper packaging that they are delivered in.
Aussies are reportedly the second largest consumers of textiles globally.
The Age article A $1 million stitch in time for Australia’s fast fashion addiction details how Sussan Ley, Environment Minister, is addressing the impacts of fast fashion consumption, through delivering a $1 million grant to the Australian Fashion Council.
The money might not seem like a lot, but it will go towards funding the nation's first National Product Stewardship Scheme for clothing and textiles, with the goal of improving recycling, recovery, and reuse. This is a step in the right direction for Australia, as they acknowledge and start to deal with the problem of over-consumption.
If you would like to check out some Aussie brands that are already doing good, take a look at;
Elk - women's clothing, leather goods and accessories.
Obus - women's clothing and accessories made form natural fibres and exclusive prints.
Outland Denim - as their name suggests, they provide premium denim made from organic and sustainable materials.
Citizen Wolf - custom made t-shirts.
Kawaii women's clothing and footwear.
Take a listen
I found the latest 35 minute episode, Fashion and the Climate Crisis, super interesting, as it unpicked supply chains, the relationship between fashion and politics, who has the power to enact change (brands or consumers), and trends in relation to consumption.
Please GET IN TOUCH or leave me a comment. I would love to know what you have been reading, watching, or listening to this week.
This is a personal blog. Any views or opinions contained on this site are my own. I am not affiliated with any brands, products, or organisations mentioned, and do not receive any sponsorship, payment, or other compensation for any of the content on this site.