Putting a number on fashion’s carbon footprint

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Bigger than the UK, Germany and France put together? More than aviation and maritime shipping combined? Eight per cent of all greenhouse gas emissions? No, wait, four per cent of the global total?

Nobody denies that fashion has a carbon footprint problem – the trouble is nobody seems sure how big it is. All of the above have been suggested by credible organisations over the last year or so to highlight the one thing that they all agree on – that the sector has a serious problem.

One recent report, ‘Fashion on Climate’, from the Global Fashion Agenda initiative and consultants McKinsey & Co claimed that fashion was responsible for some 2.1 billion metric tons of GHG emissions in 2018, about four per cent of the global total.

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