HOT OFF THE PRESS: Fashion is endangering our forests. A new report from Canopy weighs in on what we need to do about it. | Sustainable Fashion Academy

Big Closets Small Planet with Michael Schragger

HOT OFF THE PRESS: Fashion is endangering our forests. A new report from Canopy weighs in on what we need to do about it.

Forests play a crucial role in promoting biodiversity, removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and supporting livelihoods, especially in poorer countries. But because wood is the basis for so many of our products, the pressure to exploit forests, usually in unsustainable ways, continues to increase. What does this have to do with the fashion industry? A significant percentage of the fibres used in fashion come from wood, and the market for wood based textile fibres is expected to grow. Our industry may therefore be indirectly contributing to the unsustainable management and even destruction of our remaining forests.

December 16th, 2020 1 hour, 11 minutes 53 seconds
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About this episode

Forests play a crucial role in promoting biodiversity, removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and supporting livelihoods, especially in poorer countries. But because wood is the basis for so many of our products, the pressure to exploit forests, usually in unsustainable ways, continues to increase. What does this have to do with the fashion industry? A significant percentage of the fibres used in fashion come from wood, and the market for wood based textile fibres is expected to grow. Our industry may therefore be indirectly contributing to the unsustainable management and even destruction of our remaining forests. In this episode, Mike speaks with Nicole Rycroft, Founder and Executive Director of Canopy, an NGO that works with the forest industry’s biggest customers and their suppliers to develop business solutions that protect our last frontier forests, and Robert van de Kerkhof, Chief Commercial Officer at Lenzing. Using two recent reports released by Canopy as a point of departure, Nicole and Robert explain why forests are crucial for our survival, what brands and viscose producers can and should be doing to protect them, what next generation innovations are needed and what it will cost to transform viscose supply chains by 2030.

 

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About the host

Michael Schragger has been working at the intersection between sustainability, business, society and research for more than 25 years. He is an expert in analysing the impacts of environmental and social developments on business and society and mobilising stakeholders to achieve key sustainable development goals (SDGs). In 2009 Michael founded the Sustainable Fashion Academy (SFA) in order to dramatically improve environmental and human rights performance within the fashion and apparel industry. Michael participates as a senior advisor for a range of global sustainable apparel initiatives, ranging from finance to policy. He is a member of the steering group for The United Nation’s Climate Action in Fashion Charter. He also co-founded and directs The Swedish Textiles Initiative for Climate Action.

Michael currently lives in Stockholm, Sweden with his wife Erika and kids Oz and Blimah (who, unfortunately, refuse to listen to his podcasts…).