New Jersey Bans Plastic Bags in Stores

In November of 2020, Gov. Phil Murphy signed the plastic bag ban into law. This barred grocery stores from giving customers single use paper and plastic bags, and placed penalties into effect for those who violate the order. Single-use paper carryout bags are allowed to be provided or sold, except by grocery stores equal to or larger than 2,500 square feet, which may only provide or sell reusable carryout bags (Business.NJ.Gov). According to New Jersey Monitor, violators first face a warning, then a $1,000 fine that jumps to $5,000 for their third breach and any thereafter.

A pleasant greeting at my local Shoprite.

If the Department of Environmental Protection determines that there is no cost-effective non-plastic substitute, plastic objects might be added to the list of exemptions. Exemptions are valid for a year and can be renewed.

This law previously halted the distribution of plastic straws, ensuring that restaurants only provided them when specifically asked. 

The truth is, these laws have already shown tremendous impacts, with the upshot of the Sydney study showing the California bag ban reduced plastic bag consumption by 71.5% – a huge decrease (The Truth About Plastic Bags). 

Background

Plastic is never the better choice. Throughout both manufacturing and usage, it constantly pollutes and has proved to be hazardous. Furthermore, it is a dangerous threat to marine and land-based species and in the end, must be destroyed or buried, even after a lifetime of being recycled. Bag bans will not solve the plastic challenge on their own, but they will assist to shift plastic consumption habits and encourage consumers and retailers to consider alternatives (Conservation Law Foundation).

The Dangers of Single Use Plastic (Conservation Law Foundation)

All in all, even in a world pre-ban, consumers are more likely to bring reusable bags when penalties on paper bags are included in single-use plastic bag bans. A cotton bag can be reused hundreds of times and composted after it’s no longer needed. With all this considered, plastic is always more harmful and damaging than the alternatives.

How is Deforestation Caused by the Fashion Industry?

When we talk about Fast Fashion’s environmental impact, I’m sure the first thing that comes to mind is the waste pollution associated with the clothing production. However, right beside the climate footprint is the deforestation footprint caused by this industry. 

First, it is important to note the importance of forests. They are responsible for life on Earth, to put plainly. According to the World Wildlife Fund, “They purify the air we breathe, filter the water we drink, prevent erosion, and act as an important buffer against climate change.” Essentially, we know that the world runs on a loop, and everything does its own job to reach that stage of equilibrium. 

As humans, one of the primary anthropologist causes of global warming is the abundance of carbon dioxide emissions. However, forests play a role in finding a middle ground (our CO2 release through inhaling their oxygen). And the circle continues. But you knew that already. 

Research shows that 48% of fashion’s supply chain is linked with deforestation. The demand on cutting trees for fabric production is estimated to double by 2050. 70% of all clothing produced by such fibers end  up in landfills every year. Landfills that are created after the major clear cutting of vital forests. According to Kleiderly, fabrics from rainforests account for 5% of the total 1.2 trillion dollars in the textile industry globally, with this number growing at a 9% rate annually. 

Furthermore, the clear cutting of forests for landfills and lack of carbon emission mediation do not begin to address the full human impact. According to non-profit Canopy, more than 200 million trees are logged each year to be transformed into cellulosic fabrics like viscose and rayon. The organization notes that if these trees were placed end-to-end, they would circle our planet seven times. We use trees to make fabrics for the clothes we use so mindlessly. These trees live for centuries, but they are being cut down for our 2 week-long garment trends. 

So now we know about the impacts; the question of what we can do remains. 

  1. Avoid all uncertified viscose and rayon
    1. Some of these products are specifically planted for garment creation, so its better to use these. 
  2. Use alternative sustainable material
    1. Tencel
      • Tencel is made from fast-growing Eucalyptus trees grown specifically to create the material
      • No biodiverse forest risk involved
      • Closed loop recycling 
    2. Ecovero
      • Made by the same company which created Tencel, Lenzing
      • Made from ‘certified renewable wood sources using an eco-responsible production process by meeting high environmental standards’
      • Manufactured with up to 50% fewer emissions and water impact than generic viscose

Check out my other blog: 9 Sustainable Fabrics To Be On The Lookout For for more on the fabrics perspective.

In the end, everything is related. We know the fashion industry is the second largest polluter in the world, and this unfortunately does not stop at carbon emissions. 

The environment is interconnected, everything is an ecosystem- so if one part is impacted, the whole biosphere goes haywire. 

Fashion Industry’s Impact On Biodiversity

We know about the fashion industry’s impacts in relation to climate change, with the abundance of pollution, resource usage, and wasteful creation/disposal tactics. On a more specific note, apparel production plays a huge role in biodiversity disruption, from habitat loss to direct field sports. According to an article by McKinsey, “Apparel supply chains are directly linked to soil degradation, conversion of natural ecosystems, and waterway pollution” (Biodiversity: The next frontier in sustainable fashion); meaning the sustainability of general ecosystems are threatened by the ever-growing fashion industry. 

It is clear that biodiversity loss and climate change have a reciprocal relationship. For example, deforestation leads to increased climate change (due to an abundance of CO2 emissions), and in turn, rising temperatures lead to habitat destruction and biodiversity decline. 

An analysis by McKinsey and Company determined that most of the negative impact comes from three stages in the value chain: raw-material production, material preparation and processing, and end of life. This is primarily determined by land use, water use, and energy consumption. 

Based on their findings, they pinpointed the top five sectors that contribute to biodiversity loss: cotton agriculture, wood-based natural fibers/man-made cellulose fibers (MMCFs), Textile dyeing and treatment, and Microplastics and waste. 

With these sectors being incredibly important in the manufacturing industry, they have recognized that there is no viable solution that includes getting rid of said-sectors completely. Solutions overall include scaling up the company’s sustainability-focused quarters. 

To improve the sustainability of cotton, MMCFs, and synthetics, multiple technologies have already been established. Precision agriculture, integrated pest management (IPM), and micro-irrigation reduce water and chemical intensity to a certain extent. With efficient technology, there are always trade–offs, whether it be cost or guaranteed quality- however a mix of different variables can concoct more feasible solutions. 

Additionally, investing in innovative fabrics can pave the way for organic, biodegradable and renewable materials to be turned into clothing. Reusability goes hand-in-hand with renewing. Not only do recycled fibers repurpose trash, but they also have a reduced biodiversity footprint than virgin fibers.

By maintaining a strong stance on land and water pollution, on the barest level, companies will be able to protect ecosystems from further harm- consequently protecting their biodiversity. 

Take a look at McKinsey and Company’s comprehensive analysis of the fashion industry’s role in the circle of biodiversity! 

Biodiversity: The Next Frontier in Sustainable Fashion

How is fast fashion culture exaggerating the effects of plastic pollution?

The general picture that comes to mind after hearing “Plastic Pollution” probably consists of plastic bottles and bags clustered together on roads, waterways and neighborhoods. While these everyday plastics do fit the description, plastic pollution does not solely describe garbage visible to the naked eye. 

Different industries release different forms of “microplastics”- defined as “fragments of any type of plastic less than 5 mm in length,” according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the European Chemicals Agency. 

The severity of the issue microplastics bring when discussing water pollution is quite unfathomable when considering its’ miniscule size. However, most people fail to recognize that the majority of the plastic floating in the ocean does eventually break down into smaller pieces. Only 6% of plastic pollution in the ocean is visible, because the rest breaks down and sinks to the ocean floor, polluting food webs and habitats. 

Many microfibers originate from clothing materials, like polyester and nylon- which come from synthetic fibers, i.e. plastic. In 2016, 65 million tons of plastic was produced for textile fibers, representing close to 20 percent of the total plastic production for that year. Not only that, but plastics from the fashion industry are responsible for generating enormous amounts of wastewater and emitting huge quantities of carbon (How Plastic Pollution).

While these statistics can be attributed to the fashion industry in general, the pace at which fast fashion moves multiplies its’ own environmental effects. A New Textiles Economy: Redesigning Fashion’s Future, published by Ellen MacArthur Foundation in 2017, noted how the fast fashion industry has increased demand for plastic-infused clothing in recent decades due to quicker turnaround of new styles, increased clothing seasons per year, and lower prices. Fast fashion relies on massive new plastic production to fuel growth. According to the report, virgin plastic accounted for 63 percent of clothing materials used in 2015, compared to less than 3% recycled material (How Plastic Pollution). 

Basically, because of the constant weekly trends set up by fast fashion companies, they fall into a cycle of overproduction and wastage, just to continue pumping out clothes to seduce buyers. Rather than sticking with classic styles and the general 4-seasons-per-year clothing releases, fast fashion has plunged into 52-season years, increasing clothing production by 13 times. And, for those who get sucked into staying up-to-date with Shein’s overwhelming new releases, they are forced to constantly buy new clothes to avoid looking blatantly behind.

To meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals, French President Emmanuel Macron introduced the Fashion Pact at a G7 meeting in 2019. The pact included 32 companies and 150 brands (including Gucci, Chanel, and Nike) containing a set of shared goals that the fashion industry could work towards to reduce their negative impact. “Clothing companies and brands are encouraged, but not mandated, to: 1) achieve zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, 2) restore natural ecosystems and protect species, and 3) reduce the use of single-use plastic. For example, Stella McCartney is eliminating virgin plastic in her collections by using recycled polyester and upcycling materials” (How Plastic Pollution is Being Woven into Fast Fashion Culture).

With this, if fashion companies reduce their fast mindsets and adhere to their sustainability goals, we can be on our way to reducing waste, and consequently plastic pollution. 

Noise Pollution in the Fashion Industry?

The fashion industry is known for its poignant impacts regarding the environment, particularly when we talk about emissions. Water wastage and disposal are the most frequently visited subjects, so today I’m here to talk about a less known, but equally bad sector of the industry: noise pollution. 

To build an empire within the world of fashion we need factories. Most developing countries are home to factories and factory workers, because popular brands provide jobs and housing by employing civilians and using their resources. Conversation on the humanitarian aspects of the fashion industry opens up another dimension, so the main focus here is the effects of the factories outside of the physical pollution we see. 

Textile industries always incorporate modern automated machines, however, ‘emissions of excessive noise and ambient sound at work in the textile industry have shown a noticeable increase’. Noise levels of 70 to 110 dB are commonly recorded in textile plants workrooms and allegedly the progress towards greater speeds has resulted in excessive noise levels, often exceeding 110 dBA in spinning and weaving mills (Ejigu, 2019) (Noisy Fashion). 

The reason these stats are important are because the noise does impact individual health to varying degrees. According to Noisy Fashion’s analysis, the latest data (EEA, 2019) concludes that ‘long-term exposure to environmental noise is estimated to cause 12,000 premature deaths and contribute to 48,000 new cases of ischaemic heart disease per year’ in Europe alone. Similarly, it is estimated that 22 million people suffer chronic high annoyance and 6.5 million people suffer chronic high sleep disturbance as a result of environmental noise exposure throughout the EU member states.

Industrialisation, transportation, and urbanization have historically pushed environmental noise to the limelight, and the sustainability of future growth and development may be jeopardized as a result of noise’s detrimental consequences. These consequences have an impact on people’s quality of life and well-being, as well as the potential to affect their physiological health. Recent data from large-scale epidemiological studies has conclusively connected environmental noise exposure to negative health outcomes. 

As a result, environmental noise must be viewed not only as a nuisance but also as a serious threat to public health.

NJ Beekeepers Association Visits EB Save Club

We’ve all heard “Save the Bees” almost the same amount of times we’ve heard “Save the Turtles”- but let’s take a moment to really talk about the impact bees have on our ecosystem. Being a keystone species, they play a critical role in pollinating our crops and generally being an important factor in almost every food web because of the job they carry out. They are important commercially for farming practices worldwide and it is estimated that about one-third of global food production requires animal pollination and that 80–90 per cent of this role is carried out by honeybees (We Need Bees).

The climate crisis whiplash phase we are currently living through is disrupting more than we can ever imagine. Along with rising water levels, ecosystem habitats, and consequently animals, are being constantly overwhelmed and deranged, with bees being no exception. The rain limits the ability of spring bees to collect food for their offspring and super hot summers reduce flowering plants which is associated with fewer summer bees the next year. Warmer winters also lead to reduced numbers of some bee species. 

With that being said, the importance of bees is yet to be talked about in our school curriculums, even in classes like Environmental Science, the specifics tend to be blurred upon. And so, green clubs such as SAVE (Students Against Violating the Environment) have taken it upon themselves to spread the word, this time inspired by the New Jersey Beekeepers Association. 

New Jersey Beekeepers Association

The CJBA (Central Jersey Beekeeping Association) is a branch of the New Jersey Beekeepers Association whose focus is to promote beekeeping throughout the state. The CJBA serves Middlesex, Mercer, Monmouth, Ocean and Burlington counties.

Their mission is to:

  • Promote and support all aspects of beekeeping in Central Jersey
  • Educate the general public about the benefits and importance of beekeeping
  • Dispel myths and misinformation concerning the honeybee
  • Promote the honeybee and the beekeeping industry
  • Provide resources and communication to the beekeeping community

After meeting with Secretary, Mrs. Angela Juffey through emails, I reached out to the organization to give our club a presentation about bees. 

“My role, as Secretary and Beekeeper, is to support the CJBA’s mission. While having 14 hives, I reach out to my community and give Honeybee presentations when requested. When the weather is cooperative, my “girls” travel with me in an Observation Hive to various garden clubs, schools, libraries, and Harvest Festivals.” – Mrs. Juffey

The presentation not only covered the role bees play in the environment, but their different types, roles in the hive and even how to become a beekeeper yourself. 

Some of the highlights of the presentation included:

  • Specifics on bees, The Queen, Workers and Drones
  • Honey bee collapse
  • Colony Collapse Disorder, Cons and how it happens
  • Raw honey vs. Pasteurized Honey (Ms. Juffey does collect raw honey from her beloved bees)
  • Honey Bee diseases, pests and predators
  • Bee behavior and communication
  • How to be a friend to the bees:
    • Plant bee friendly wildflowers and shrubs: crocus and snowdrop, lavender, thyme, sage, etc.
    • Bird bath for thirsty bees
    • Dandelions have a lot of nectar for bees, so do not pick them near bee hives!!!
    • Make your own bee house – hollow bamboo shoots in a flower vase
    • Become a beekeeper
    • Always face hives east to get the bees out as soon as sun rises

As the Vice President of SAVE Cub, on behalf of all of us, I’d like to thank NJ Beekeepers Association and the wonderful Ms. Juffey for such an insightful presentation. 

Take a look at https://www.njbeekeepers.org/ to learn more!

Is Carbon-Capturing Clothing Possible?

The Green Revolution in the 1950s made way for numerous sustainable projects on the basis of reducing carbon emissions and air pollution- which were at the highest levels ever seen following World War 2. As technology advanced, by the time we reached the 70s, scientists were able to trace disastrous climate reactions to the heating up of the atmosphere because of the unstopped emissions. The idea of Carbon-capturing technology (CCUS- Carbon Capture, Utilization and Storage) came into place as a method of capturing emissions before they were released into the atmosphere, and following collection they would be converted into another energy form. However, with the Cold War and rise of nuclear warfare, the cost of sustainable energy sky-rocketed while research on their efficiency declined. So, CCUS did not get the time or money it needed for development and never became reliable enough for our daily use. 

Its all changing now, though. 

Currently, there are 21 large-scale CCUS projects for reducing factory emissions around the world. Over the past ten years, technology has been able to make carbon capture processes cost up to 70% less than before with new solvents and chemical “sponges” to capture CO2 and catalysts to speed up the CCUS processes.

Now, with these improvements on energy efficiency, we need to consider which industries must begin their transition into utilizing these technologies. Of course, those with higher contributions to overall emissions must prioritize green energy- namely, the fashion industry. In 2018, the fashion industry was responsible for 10% of global carbon emissions and nearly 20% of wastewater (mostly attributed to jeans production). Moreover, fast fashion is one of the most wasteful sections in the garment line, their very ideology of cheap clothing for cheap prices puts up major red flags. 

Keeping that in mind, certain designers have begun researching carbon–capturing type clothing, so the garments can limit their negative impact through material usage. Post Carbon Lab was founded by Dian-Jen Lin, a London College of Fashion graduate from their fashion futures program, and Hannes Hulstaert, an Architecture graduate of the University of Antwerp. Their mission in creating the company was to promote something they call Regenerative Sustainability Activism, which they describe as “making sustainability as easy and accessible as daily conveniences like putting on clothes and commuting,” which includes designing garments with photosynthetic and pollution-filtering properties to reduce the environmental impact of the fashion industry (Caldas).

As of right now, the garments feature a “living algae coating, consisting of layers of photosynthetic micro-organisms that can turn carbon dioxide into oxygen [and glucose].” To keep the algae alive and carbon-capturing, though, the outfits need to be looked after as if they were almost like plants. Caring procedures include daily watering, ph neutral detergent washing when needed, direct heat prevention, and storage in well-lit, ventilated spaces (Caldas). 

This is still an upcoming idea, and will take more time to create real SUSTAINable clothing that will last long enough to be viewed as slow fashion, without needing so many resources to ensure it’s wearability. 

To conclude with a statement from the producers, “We love how each piece has turned out and how accessible they are for people looking to make a statement and reduce their carbon footprint.” Despite the fact that the collection is only a designer concept, it demonstrates how, as time goes on,  more enterprises will seek to reduce their carbon footprints through further investigation, research, and experiments to ensure a brighter, greener future.

Take a look at Is Carbon-Capturing Clothing the Possible Future for Fashion? for more! 

Top 5 Online Thrift Stores

We know that thrifting is one of the most effective strategies to lessen your environmental footprint and avoid fast fashion.

Thrifting online brings both sustainability and convenience to the table. Rather than having to search through materials to ensure eco-friendly creation- you can be sure that simply buying from these sites already sets you on a greener path. Many online thrift stores let you narrow your search by color, size, brand, and price range to locate exactly what you want, so the options are limitless!

  1. ThredUp

ThreadUp promises good quality clothing and even provides material descriptions. Fabric content is essential regarding sustainability, and they do an excellent job of displaying that information so it’s possible to see what you’re purchasing. 

ThredUp ships in cardboard and tissue paper keeping things plastic free!

Thrift unique, one-of-a-kind treasures from your favorite brands at up to 90% off retail! Shop high quality second hand clothing on one of the largest online thrift stores. Up to 50% Off Code: NEW. 100% Guaranteed Authentic. Designer brands. Hassle-free returns.

  1. Swap

Quite similar to Thredup, garment wise, however, the pricing is notably a steal. One of the main issues people have with sustainable clothing are the prices that come with it. Swap is undeniably inexpensive, the only downfall is the lack of material description and shipping packaging. 

If purchasing from Swap, it may be beneficial to further research your cart’s materials, if you are very particular about sustainability in the processing part. Additionally, Swap does send shipments using plastic- removing a point from the eco-friendly factor!

Get 40% off your first order!

  1. eBay

One of the most popular websites for buying and selling, Ebay is very consumer-based. You have the freedom to scroll for hours, and of course, ebay extends outside of just clothing. You can turn to it for mostly anything, making it a very reliable alternative to buying new. 

Regarding a return policy, it depends on the buyer, so definitely keep your eye out on that. 

  1. Vestaire Collection 

According to Katherine Kellogg (Going Zero Waste) “Last year for mother’s day, I bought my mom a really nice scarf from Vestaire Collective and the process couldn’t have been easier. Vestaire Collective skews more towards high-end and luxury designers. Similar to Poshmark or Depop, Vestaire simply acts as the connector pairing individual sellers to buyers. The big difference is that Vestaire authenticates their sellers items. Before the scarf was sent to my mom, it first went through authentication to ensure it wasn’t a fake item. This is a great addition of security if you’re interested in buying luxury items.”

  1. Etsy

Etsy is an online marketplace that connects sellers with buyers. It is primarily used for selling vintage items, handmade goods, art, and crafts. To sell on Etsy, you must create an account before you can open a storefront.

Etsy is also the first major online shopping destination to offset 100% of carbon emissions from shipping so every time you purchase an item on Etsy, they balance out the carbon emissions by creating a positive environmental impact. Regarding packaging, you can contact your seller and explain how you’d like the package to be plastic-free or sustainably packaged!

Be sure to check these online thrift stores out and give one a try! 

Tips for a Sustainable New Year

2021 is coming to an end, and with a year full of notable moments, we are ready to move onto the next. I’m sure you all have your own new year resolutions, but here’s a few more simple ones to add to the list. This way, you’ll improve more than just yourself- take a hit at helping our environment too!

  1. Switch our disposables for a reusable set
    1. Utensils and straws come in more reliable, good quality metals
    2. Rather than using paper towels for hand drying, invest in kitchen towels and throw them in the wash with your regular laundry load
    3. Tote bags instead of plastic bags 
    4. Reusable cotton balls and face cleansing tools for makeup removal 
  2. Careful food-shopping: When you go grocery shopping, start at the perimeter of the store. The bulk and produce areas, which are usually on the outskirts of grocery stores, are a wonderful place to start if you want to avoid the central aisles’ excessive packaging.
  1. Eat less meat: Eating less meat and dairy is the most effective strategy to lower your carbon footprint. You could try Meatless Mondays, being Vegan Before 6 like author Mark Bittman, only eating meat on weekends, only purchasing ethically and sustainably produced meat and dairy, or simply going vegetarian or vegan, or participating in Veganuary, depending on how much meat and dairy you already consume.
  1. Avoid driving solo: Try public transportation or carpooling
  2. Try packaging alternatives: Look for bamboo, glass, and stainless steel alternatives to plastic packaging.
  3. Buy less “new,” try secondhand: Limit yourself to one new purchase every month and buy everything else secondhand or make it yourself! For example, Goodwill!
  1. Shop locally: Shopping locally is a great way to reduce carbon emissions and grow your local economy. This takes into consideration transportation and packaging for more commercialized stores. 
  1. Choose organic alternatives: Choose organic whenever possible. Organic farming uses fewer resources, protects bees, prevents air and groundwater pollution, and increases biodiversity, which are all critical to sustainability in the truest sense of the word. 
  1. Say no to fast fashion! Gone are the days of overpriced, irritable hemp dresses. With the rise of climate based advocation, brands have been making themselves more accessible to the general public with cute styles and good prices.
  1. Keep your eyes open and influence your community: Send an email or leave a review every time you visit a restaurant or store with excessive plastic packaging, requesting sustainable alternatives. You could do the same with online shopping for clothes, everyday materials etc. 

Even if you can’t do it all, you start making a difference one step at a time. Pick up one point from the list, see if it works out and then add more with time. 

Happy new year to you all, and best of luck with your resolutions!

The Fashion Industry’s Efforts at COP26

Despite sustainability’s numerous jumps in recent years, committing to net-zero and relying on carbon-offsetting procedures will (probably) never be enough to bring us back where we should be. These means will only attempt to undo the unsustainable emissions that have already been collected in the atmosphere. Even with motives like “carbon positivity”- where we utilize more carbon than we emit- we need changes on a bigger scale. Please, don’t regard my negative tone as “biased”; I’m simply giving you a realistic rundown. 

The global climate summit wrapping up in Glasgow is known as COP26, with COP standing for Conference of the Parties. In diplomatic parlance, “the parties” refers to the 197 nations that agreed to a new environmental pact. The United States and other countries ratified the treaty, which aims to combat “dangerous human interference with the climate system” and stabilize levels of greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere. This is the 26th time countries have gathered under the convention. Hence, COP26 (“What does COP stand for?”). We’re at a place where the fashion industry’s emissions are actually double what they should be in order to stay in line with the Paris Agreement’s goal of keeping global warming to 1.5 degrees celsius (Chan). The enormity of the situation called for the  United Nations Fashion Industry Charter For Climate Action to gather and set initiatives that rule out specific ways of reading CO2 emissions in order to keep them level with the Paris agreement.

So far, specific changes include increasing the percentage by which CO2 emissions will be reduced- however the real question of how is not as easy to come by. Brands like Burberry, Chanel and Gucci have committed to halving greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, rather than solely decreasing by 30% like the original plan was. 

These commitments only do so much, so setting transparent, specific goals can also ensure reliance. The Charter has also set a new target for 100% of “priority” materials – such as cotton, viscose, polyester, wool and leather – to be low climate impact by 2030. The agreement specifically points to materials that can be recycled in a closed loop, and are deforestation-free, conversion-free (meaning natural ecosystems are not destroyed in the process) and produced using regenerative practices (Chan). 

Transparency with the pubic is as important as transparency within the creative process. Brands must work with their suppliers to track the supply chain and recognize which areas are in need of change. The new Charter pledges tier one and tier two providers to phase out coal by 2030, with zero new coal power by 2023, as well as assisting suppliers in implementing science-based targets by the end of 2025.

To track progress and ensure efficiency, brands have a year from now to submit their plans regarding specifics on how they will reduce their emissions, and will send reports every three years to serve as updates. These plans will be evaluated on effectiveness through constant monitoring to guarantee we reach out carbon emission goals by 2023. 

With further research, I came across a simple, general list that could be a starting point for most large brand names. 

  1. Reducing energy usage

This can be done through utilizing more energy efficient lights, appliances, switching to a green web hosting company etc. 

  1. Eliminate single use plastic

Every time someone discards a plastic straw, bag, cup, or other packaging materials, they contribute to climate change.Cafeteria silverware, disposable coffee cups, and plastic water bottles can all be easily replaced with reusable alternatives. Reusable replacements cut carbon emissions while also lowering waste disposal expenses.Additionally, for shipment, using degradable material for shipping and not overpacking can decrease waste buildup by a large margin. 

  1. Tracking supply chain efficiency

Increased transparency with suppliers allows companies to see where resources are wasted through inefficient operations. 

Take a look at Vogue’s “How Fashion Is Ramping Up Its Climate Efforts at COP26″ for a more in-depth analysis.