How do your fashion choices affect carbon emissions?
Subtle changes in approach can have a big impact on your fashion carbon footprint. A study by environmental consultancy Green Story puts numbers on those choices by ranking each behaviour change by its potential annual carbon saving.
Over 85% of the potential carbon savings in the analysis are accounted for by the top three behaviour changes. Lets dig into those a little more.
Buying mostly second-hand clothes delivers its carbon saving by displacing the need to manufacture new fashion. For example, it takes around 75lbs of CO2 to produce the average pair of jeans, a result of energy-intensive raw material production, preparation and processing as well as long transportation distances. Switching to buying secondhand saves on those manufacturing emissions and significantly lowers the transportation emissions by making trade national rather than international.
The potential saving of air-drying might take you by surprise. But the energy used up in one mechanical drying cycle is HUGE.
Finally - shopping sustainable brands. What does that really mean? It can really be taken to mean any brand or producer of new fashion that has taken decisions with their sourcing, supply chain or materials that significantly cuts the emissions and waste footprint of the production process. A common example can be sourcing from local supply chains or using organic fabrics that need less processing and energy usage.