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Phoebe English among fashion signatories calling COP26 to climate action

By Rachel Douglass

2 Nov 2021

Business

Image: COP26

As the world’s leaders come together for the ongoing United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), members of the fashion industry have united to call on the leaders to make a number of commitments addressing climate issues.

Around 120 world leaders have come together in Glasgow, Scotland, to discuss global negotiations centred around efforts to assist in climate action. Major emitting countries are set to come together with the most vulnerable to climate change, with the World Leaders Summit aiming to send a signal to enforce significant advancements.

“The science is clear that the window of time we have to keep the goal of 1.5 degrees celsius alive and to avoid the worst effects of climate change is closing fast,” said COP president Alok Sharma, in a speech addressing the leaders. “But with political will and commitment, we can, and must, deliver an outcome in Glasgow the world can be proud of.”

Fashion Roundtable has brought together members of the fashion industry and civil society organisations to ask world leaders to commit to five recommendations.

UK designer Phoebe English, eco-organisation Fashion Revolution and the Future Fabrics Expo are among the extensive list of signatories sending out the unified message.

The recommendations include the collective action to achieve net-zero emissions by no later than 2050, resourcefulness in waste elimination, to increase responsibility by businesses towards their global supply chains, support skill development in education for the repair and reuse of clothing and frame solutions to the climate emergency around shifting business models towards a climate-friendly economy.

Furthermore, the organisation is inviting the public to send a letter to their UK MPs, offering a brief proposed template to use that outlines the recommendations involved and why the fashion industry needs these commitments.

So far, marking the start of the two-week conference, UK prime minister Boris Johnson has announced a funding package, as part of the country’s Clean Green Initiative. The package will support the rollout of sustainable infrastructure and green technologies in developing countries, including providing 2.2 billion pounds of investments in climate-related projects in India and Africa.

Further leader events are set to focus on the action on forests and land use, as well as the acceleration of clean technology, innovation and development.