Widespread Inaction on Sustainability Eclipses Progress at Fashion’s Biggest Companies
Efforts to transform the fashion industry in line with global ambitions to curb climate change and establish more responsible business practices by 2030 have yet to gain sufficient momentum, The BoF Sustainability Index 2022 finds.
The scope of the second edition of The BoF Sustainability Index has doubled, now tracking sustainability efforts at 30 of fashion’s biggest publicly traded companies in the luxury, sportswear and high street sectors.
The Index assesses companies’ progress towards ambitious 2030 goals across six impact categories: Transparency, Emissions, Water & Chemicals, Waste, Materials and Workers’ Rights.
Industry performance worsened as incremental progress among the original cohort assessed last year was eclipsed by inaction among many of the newly added companies.
No company scored more than 49 points out of 100, with Puma taking the top spot followed by Kering and Levi Strauss. The five weakest performers — URBN, Skechers, Fila Holdings, Anta and HLA Group — all scored fewer than 10 points.
After the SAC’s Higg Index became a central focus for greenwashing allegations, the trade group commissioned an independent review. Its recommendations include scrapping a stand-alone materials assessment and more work to improve the data.
Soaring luxury goods prices have boosted turnover at companies like LVMH and Kering, helping them to report reductions in their ‘emissions intensity’ — the volume of planet-warming gases released relative to revenue.
This week, New York played host to one of the world’s largest climate confabs, but there was little visible presence from fashion’s biggest companies. If the industry doesn’t pull up a seat at the table, it risks getting left behind.
The Chinese company hopes to alleviate its environmental impact through programmes like EvoluShein, which focuses on producing garments out of recycled polyester and reducing waste from unsold clothes.