Sustainability Trends & News Worth Exploring — October 11
Welcome back to another Sustainability Pulse! We truly hope your weekend has been relaxing and renewing as we continue to sail through a new week.
Google bans ads on content, including YouTube videos, with false claims about climate change.
Google said it will no longer display advertisements on YouTube videos and other content that promote inaccurate claims about climate change.
The decision, by the company’s ads team, means that it will no longer permit websites or YouTube creators to earn advertising money via Google for content that “contradicts well-established scientific consensus around the existence and causes of climate change.” And it will not allow ads that promote such views from appearing.
The policy applies to content that refers to climate change as a hoax or a scam, denies the long-term trend that the climate is warming, or denies that greenhouse gas emissions or human activity is contributing to climate change.
Canada Goose enlists Romeo Beckham and Indigenous advocates for first footwear campaign
Outerwear brand Canada Goose has unveiled the Live in the Open campaign for its first footwear collection, starring Romeo Beckham and Indigenous representatives, Sarain Fox and Jordin Tootoo.
Its new shoe range, which was only unveiled recently, is the brands first footwear venture since its acquisition of Canadian footwear label Baffin, in 2018. The new line features two styles for men and women, designed to mirror that of its well-known outerwear pieces.
The Snow Mantra Boot, the shoe version of the parka, possesses a waterproof construction and is built to endure harsh weather conditions. A removable insulated lining mould to the foot over time, with the label stating the shoe, provides both comfort and practicality. Its second option, the Journey Boot, is inspired directly by the classic hiking boot. It aims to be an essential piece that offers flexibility and stabilizers.
Seven native-owned businesses to support
One of the best ways to support Indigenous culture is to support the Native-owned brands that give it a voice. Indigenous clothing, art, food and beauty businesses are prospering in North America, from Los Angeles to Canada. The businesses listed below are just a sampling of this thriving creative scene, accessible both in-person and online.
Brothers Felipe and Ignacio Santiago grew up in San Felipe Guila, a small town in Oaxaca, Mexico. Throughout their childhood, they spoke only Zapotec, one of the 50 dialects of an Indigenous language family native to the city.
The brothers have amassed a loyal local fanbase as well as national attention. Last year, X’tiosu Kitchen was featured in season two of the hit Netflix series “Ugly Delicious,” which spotlights chefs who aim to use food to overcome stereotypes and share their culture.
Art collective and clothing brand NSRGNTS was founded in 2000 by Votan Ik and his partner Leah “Povi” Marie to connect with their culture and encourage the spread of Indigenous philosophy. Ik is of Nahuan and Mayan descent and Marie is of Dine, Hopi and Pueblo descent.
The brand initially hosted powwows, festivals and feasts to bring the community together using handmade clothing, beadwork, pottery and crafts. It then transitioned its activities to an L.A. based brick-and-mortar store, and now, it is online.
“Séka” means blue in Patwin, a tribal language native to the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. Séka Hills, an estate-grown wine and olive oil brand, commemorates its Native ancestors who tended to the blue hills surrounding Northern California’s Capay Valley.
How to Quit Fast Fashion, According to Aja Barber
“The future looks both bright and bleak,” Aja Barber writes in her first book, Consumed, as she reminds us that it’s not too late to create an equitable and sustainable fashion industry. But we need to act fast. True to the form that has made Barber’s Instagram account a must-follow for anyone interested in sustainable fashion, her book is not here to pretend the status quo is working for any of us. It’s here to jolt us into action.
Barber has been building a career out of answering that question. She can effortlessly weave together personal anecdotes with the disheartening historical impacts of colonialism on the modern-day fashion industry one moment, and be laugh-out-loud funny the next. She reminds us that individual choices still matter and offer slivers of optimism amid the sobering reality that if our reliance on fast fashion doesn’t change, the planet is in big trouble. The book is a blueprint for anyone who wants to do better.
Net-a-Porter Is Launching a Resale Pilot Program With Reflaunt
The market for secondhand clothing and accessories has overgrown (21 times faster than the overall apparel retail market, to be exact) over the last few years, and there are no signs of that growth slowing. As a result, more and more consumers are embracing the buying and selling of used designer goods through platforms like The Real Real, Rebag and Fashionphile. Meanwhile, traditional luxury brands and retailers, who were once wary of these competitive platforms and their wide assortments of discounted designer treasures, are increasingly choosing to embrace this shift in consumer behavior, instead of fighting it.
Luxury e-commerce giant Net-a-Porter is the latest to get on board. Along with sister sites Mr Porter and The Outnet, the retailer announced that it's partnering with resale technology provider Reflaunt to launch a pilot program that encourages customers to extend the lives of their designer pieces' lives by selling them.
Zalando invests in circular apparel and textile tech group Infinited Fiber Company
Zalando is the latest fashion company to invest in circular apparel and textile technology group Infinited Fiber Company.
The German e-tail giant announced Tuesday it has invested an undisclosed sum in the Finish company, whose proprietary technology turns cellulose-based raw materials like cotton-rich textile waste into a regenerated textile called Infinna, which is biodegradable, recyclable and contains no microplastics.
It comes as the market for alternative, non-plastic-based materials continues to heat up amid growing consumer and investor demand for more sustainable fashion.
The investment by Zalando completes a 30 million euro funding round led by H&M Group, with participation from other fashion giants like Adidas and Bestseller’s investment arm Invest FWD A/S.
The Women Making Fashion Ethical and Equitable
Ayesha Barenblat, founder and CEO of Remake
As a first-generation Pakistani immigrant, Ayesha Barenblat is “deeply connected to the women who make our clothes.” She marks the deadly collapse of the Rana Plaza factory in 2013 as the breaking point for the industry and herself. So in 2015 she started Remake, an organization providing information and resources about the fashion industry’s implications for the environment and humanity.
“[There is this] dichotomy of the glitz and glamour of New York Fashion Week and the beauty of fashion magazines with the underbelly, which is so ugly. How is it that this very profitable, multi-trillion-dollar industry makes clothes in this way? This way that is so deeply polluting, so decimating of communities and ravaging women of color.
Hannah Testa, founder of Hannah4Change
Eighteen-year-old Hannah Testa’s journey as an environmental activist stems from her love of animals and the natural world. Seeing the planet decimated by plastic pollution spurred the Vanderbilt University freshman to take a public stand with her platform Hannah4Change, which provides education about post-consumer plastics and promotes positive change, and through her book, Taking on the Plastics Crisis.
“Fashion intersects with many of the issues I care about when it comes to plastic, ocean conservation, and animal rights. Ninety-nine percent of all plastic is fossil-fuel based. It doesn’t ever break down. It breaks up into smaller pieces, but it doesn’t ever go away. So when you’re using [your clothing], [the microplastics from synthetic fibers] start to shed and break down.
Hilary Jochmans, founder of PoliticallyInFashion
After spending a dozen years as a senior staffer in both the House and the Senate, government affairs consultant Hilary Jochmans has made it her mission to convince the government of the need for a federal fashion czar. The role would oversee policy in the fashion industry and the updating of the Federal Trade Commission’s Green Guides, which were introduced in 1992 but have not been updated in almost a decade. The FTC will be re-examining them in 2022.
“It’s not so much about making a value call as to what’s good and what’s bad, but consumers need to know what is [out] there and what their options are about what to purchase.
Fast fashion in the U.S. is fueling an environmental disaster in Ghana
According to reports, there has been a five-fold increase in the amount of clothing Americans buy over the last three decades, but each item is worn only an average of seven times. This has resulted in more discarded clothing than ever.
Many Americans donate their used clothing to charities when they are finished with it, assuming that it will be reused. But with the increasing amount of items being discarded and the poorer quality of fast fashion, less and less can be resold, and millions of garments are put into bales and shipped abroad every year.
At Ghana's Kamanto market, around 15 million used clothing items from Western countries arrive every week. The entire population of Ghana is only 30 million.
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