WWF France launched last week the Eco-design Guide for textile and clothing products, in partnership with the association Yamana, the agency EVEA and professionals in the textile industry.
Our up to our bedroom, our decor to our furniture, textile products and clothing accompany our daily lives so much so that we do not notice them anymore. And yet they are everywhere! With a trade volume of 612 billion of dollars, world exports of textile products and clothing weigh 4% of world merchandise exports. In France, with 2.5 billion Euros, this market is the second largest consumer’s market, immediately after food.
With the lifting of import quotas (in 2005 and again in 2008), the sector was not spared by globalization. Official sources estimate that more than 30 million people are employed in the sector. To date, over 60% of these jobs are located in Asia, theater unfortunate of environmental, sanitary and social scandals. In China, for example, official sources now recognize that nearly 70% of rivers and lakes are polluted by the industry.
Beyond these very worrying findings, WWF wanted to contribute constructively to the many players in this sector particularly complex. This contribution takes the form of a practical guide to eco-design for all the players of the textiles and clothing sector.
The guide describes each stage of the textile and clothing product’s life cycle through the challenges of sustainable development and practices to be implemented to improve environmental, sanitary and social performance of the whole sector. As an operational tool for decision support, the book proposes at the end about ten fact sheets in order to guide the reader in its eco-design reasoning.
Due to the scope of practice and the diversity of actors, this guide can not claim to be exhaustive. It will nevertheless provide a framework for eco-design business and set the foundation for constructive dialogue between all stakeholders in the sector.