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This Proposed Fashion Act Bill Could Make New York a Leader in Sustainability

For an industry that has gone unregulated for this long, only intervention from the government or law can bring about any real change. And the fashion capital of the U.S. has set out to prove just that with its proposed sustainable fashion bill that could drive the industry in a socially responsible direction. Ahead, we discover what the bill is all about and how it could bring about a huge impact.

Key Takeaways: Fashion’s negative impact 

Since the early 2000s, the production of apparel and footwear has doubled and is expected to increase in volume by 102 million tonnes within the decade. In fact, research from the European Environment Agency has pointed out that textiles are the fourth-largest cause of environmental pressure after food, housing and transport. 

Moreover, the fashion industry is also responsible for a huge share of global water pollution, consumes more energy than aviation and shipping combined, and is expected to be responsible for 25% of the world’s remaining carbon budget by 2050. One of the main reasons why fashion has such a big impact on our environment is because it is one of the least regulated industries. 

The fashion act 

In an attempt to set fashion on the right track, the New Standard Institute, a non-profit working with scientists and citizens to make fashion more sustainable introduced ‘The Fashion Act’ — a groundbreaking piece of legislation that will shift the industry away from its current state of evasiveness by requiring mandatory social and environmental due diligence. It will also stop the fashion industry’s dependence on fossil fuels by requiring companies to operate in line with the Paris Agreement.

The proposed law will require global fashion brands (with more than $100 million in revenues) doing business in NY to:

This bill has been sponsored by New York State Senator Alessandra Biaggi, Assemblywoman Anna R. Kelles and backed by a powerful coalition of sustainable fashion non-profits, as well as designer Stella McCartney. 

If passed, the Fashion Act would apply to nearly every big player in the game, right from luxury conglomerates like LVMH and Kering, to fast fashion bigwigs like Shein and Boohoo.

If you live in New York and support the Fashion Act, you can take action by contacting local representatives; specifically, by reaching out to your New York State Senator and Assembly Member.


Published by: Vibhuti Vazirani/ 2022-01-16

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