2023: A Pivotal Year in Climate History

The Climate Crisis Impact on the Fashion Industry

2023 represents a pivotal year in climate history. In a sobering report by the Copernicus Climate Change Service (C3S), 2023 has emerged as the hottest year documented since 1850.

2023, the turning point in climate history

The global temperature surge has peaked at a staggering 1.48°C, alarmingly near the critical 1.5°C threshold. Specifically, September stands out as the hottest month on record, painting a stark reality check after the mockery of the recent climate summit in Dubai. In other words, the earth is about to cross the critical threshold, breaching the Paris Agreement target to keep global warming under that to prevent the most severe consequences.

Even if the world has not breached the 1.5° target, temperatures have surpassed the 1.5°C target on almost half the days of 2023, which sets a concerning precedent.

The cause behind this alarming spike is the unprecedented levels of carbon dioxide emissions, coupled with the return of the natural climate phenomenon, El Niño. Above all, our persistent inaction and procrastination in addressing necessary measures for 2050!

Immediate action, not in 2050!

So far, we’ve been grappling with droughts, wildfires, floods, and other extreme weather events. Now, it’s time to reconsider our approach to climate adaptation. Reshape it fundamentally.

What is the solution? It lies in immediate and concerted efforts to slash emissions. Now! Not in 2050! Every fraction of a degree in temperature rise intensifies the severity of catastrophic weather occurrences.

Fashion industry & climate emergency

The fashion industry is not immune to these effects, evidenced by the challenging sales of knitwear and outerwear during the Fall/Winter 23 season. Unfortunately, this hasn’t prompted significant shifts in how brands curate and sell their collections or how retailers conduct their buying and selling operations.

Fashion brands and corporations babble something about Net zero and green growth. But, their reluctance to embrace meaningful change relegates these promises to a vague future. A future far removed from the immediate concerns. And a future that when it becomes a reality, purchasing fashion items will be the last thing crossing people’s minds.

To the fashion industry: 2023 marks a crucial turning point in the history of our climate. What more do we need to witness before taking decisive action? What are we waiting for?

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The Climate Joke

COP28: Hypocrisy & Climate Change

If hypocrisy always accompanies the climate summit, this COP28 sounds like a joke.

Many traditional Italian jokes start like this: there is an Italian, a French and a German. Now add that they meet up in Dubai to talk about climate change. Okay, for real, COP28, the annual climate summit, is now held in Dubai. Whether you are Italian or not, you’ll laugh because it sounds like a joke!

By the way, we can expand this joke, including other countries. There are three British men who flew on three private jets to Dubai to attend a meeting led by an oil and gas CEO to talk about not using oil. And, of course, not killing the planet to satisfy their lifestyle!
In fact, according to The Independent, Sunak, Cameron and King Charles each take on private jets to travel to COP28. Three private jets to talk about cutting emissions! Surely, the right thing to do!

We could continue with the other countries in the world; the pattern doesn’t change. So, the joke gets shared.

The joke: a petro-state for climate change

Not only is COP “whatever the number,” the conference where world leaders gather to discuss climate change for about five days and then go back home with nothing done. Specifically, they postpone the change for the next 15 or 20 years, which is pure madness. It reveals a total lack of understanding of the climate emergency and a willingness to make change.
But, this year, it is even more absurd: they join in Dubai. Precisely, world leaders gather in a country whose only power relies on oil to talk about climate change. Conflict of interest? It doesn’t concern them! Private jets, helicopters, shopping in giant shopping malls – an energy-absorbing country whose energy and water consumption per capita is the highest in the world.

What are they talking about? Where are we heading?

To conclude, we share Mario Tozzis words:

“There is little use in gathering at conferences like COP28, where it is more important not to step on the toes of a destructive economy than to worry about the health of the Earth. They can spare us the mockery.”

Enough with the climate joke! We cannot listen to politicians and billionaires who travel on private jets telling us how to consume! This hypocrisy is disturbing. We are fed up with it. Aren’t you?

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This is Autumn?

Global boiling & its impact on the fashion industry

September 23rd was the first Autumn day, but this is Autumn? Sunday, the temperature in Milano reached 32 Celsius (about 90 Fahrenheit). In other words, we don’t have to wait for climate change – climate change is here. For brands and fashion retailers, it is particularly odd.

Specifically, it’s the global boiling era. Yet, in every industry, as well as in fashion, people work like nothing serious happens. Do they wear blinders? Don’t they feel the heatwave? Or maybe they think: “Yes, it’s hot, but there’s nothing we can do.”
As a matter of fact, in every field, people like cogs dutifully do their job. No questioning. It seems money, budgets, and turnover is what counts. Who cares if we are boiling?

What’s the impact of climate change on the fashion industry?

Fall/Winter shop windows reveal the inadequacy of fashion. Fashion is out of sync with current times.
First, people still wear lightweight clothing. We don’t need warm garments now. Indeed, stores overflow with wool sweaters, coats, down jackets, and all the winter stuff. But who dares now to try a wool sweater when the temperature invites you to the beach?
Second: sooner or later, cold weather will come. However, because of the heat wave, retailers who sell mass-produced garments will lose about two full-price months from the selling season. That means mass retailers’ unsold stock will be huge. Therefore, they will sell most garments during the end-of-season sale.

Autumn fashion in the global boiling era

In this context, it is clear that the actual pattern (mass manufacturing/ overproduction and distribution) doesn’t work anymore. We must stop and rethink the fashion industry from scratch. Ignoring climate change is dangerous nonsense since it is now a tangible reality.

Also, the above points come from a financial perspective, while ethics should be our first concern. Raising awareness on climate action is crucial. We must reduce our impact on the planet. How do we do it? By limiting by far our consumption to what really counts. Consume less. Don’t buy pointless stuff. Avoid waste.

Above all, start asking yourself: This is Autumn?
Most people pretend nothing happens. But with what conscience do they keep their eyes closed?

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Sustainable Fashion Awards 23

What are we celebrating?

The Sustainable Fashion Awards 23 closed the Milano Fashion Week. Camera Nazionale della Moda Italiana arranged this award ceremony to celebrate the designers who stood out for their environmental commitment, ethical practices and social rights.

We should be happy with it, celebrate the winners and move to Paris! No?

Held at Teatro La Scala, the Sustainable Fashion Awards reminded us that although the fashion industry is polluting, the Italian supply chain is progressing towards a greener way of operating the fashion business.

In other words, this event is a counterpart of the Milano Fashion Week. But you find the same names you’ve seen on the runways over the week, just under a different umbrella – a green one. And put into words with those labels so familiar to marketing blurring into greenwashing.

Sustainable Fashion Awards & The elephant in the room

Perhaps industry players, business owners, and designers are developing a higher consciousness about green matters. And, perhaps, some changes could be relevant. However, we cannot understand how these changes can still work in attunement to a production pattern based on overproduction.

It’s one or the other! And since the two elements aren’t consistent, they cannot stand on one plate because they clash.

The fashion industry has one major issue: overproduction, the elephant in the room, which none dares to mention. But if we still have overproduction, there’s no sustainability. No effective change in production chains will be enough without interrupting the overproduction pattern.

Sustainable Fashion Awards 23 witnessed a progression in the fashion industry towards greener practices, elevating environmental consciousness. But, as Mr Pierre-Alexis Dumas, Hermès creative director, said at Triennale: “Sustainability, that’s where we have a problem in fashion. We are making a change with low impact facilities and manufacturing practices. Perhaps in 15 or 20 years we’ll see the result and we’ll finally be sustainable.”

Unfortunately, according to climate scientists, we do not have that time. So, in the end, what are we celebrating now?

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The fashion dinosaur

Why aren’t fashion people adapting to the new context?

The fashion industry looks like a dinosaur that, no matter what happens around it, keeps doing the same stuff as it has always done.

In Milano, we are boiling. Literally. Physically. Around 26 to 30 degrees Celsius. We’d rather go back to the beach! People wear short-sleeved cotton T-shirts and lightweight cotton jackets for the office. But we sweat like in August. And even if there’s a light rain today, it’s definitely not the wool weather. The situation doesn’t seem much different across Europe.

We are going to get Fall/Winter clothing collections soon, which we postponed a little. It didn’t seem so urgent, at least from our viewpoint, to sell wool trousers. Well, unless someone plans to go to Norway! In that case, let us know, and we’ll find something cool for you.
Also, the Milano Fashion Week is about to start, but the fundamentals are always the same.

Climate change & the fashion dinosaur

Hey, climate change is real. In this abnormal context, which seems the new normal, does it make sense to work as we have always done? Can’t we evolve towards something different?

For brands: What’s the point of planning collections as they have always done? Following a pattern totally disconnected from reality – is it what we need now?

For people who buy fashion: Does it make sense to follow brands, shops, or people who urge you to purchase clothes out of the actual context?

More seasonless fashion: the style #formodernhumans

What changes should the fashion industry make to adapt to the new context? The industry needs to set up collections differently, choosing natural materials and leaner selling patterns. Less mass products, more tailoring and made-to-order. More seasonless designs.

However, it would be interesting to understand why people don’t understand brands that offer an alternative fashion concept. Indeed, we would like to hear your thoughts on this point.

Do you know you can buy seasonless items if you need something new? More and more, it makes sense to focus on seasonless clothing because it is more adaptable to different weather conditions. And with a proper layering style, you can wear these garments throughout the year.

In the end, dinosaurs have gone extinct. So will the fashion dinosaur if we do not make a change.

Share your thoughts with us! Comment here below or WhatsApp directly from here!

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