Lululemon, the H&M Group and the H&M Foundation are among some of the leading funders of a new initiative aimed at helping decarbonise and modernize the fashion industry’s supply chains.
The Apparel Impact Institute (AII), a nonprofit organization that focuses on climate action and fashion sustainability, announced on Wednesday the main funders of its $250 million Fashion Climate Fund.
Lululemon, H&M Group, H&M Foundation and The Schmidt Family Foundation were named principal founders of the fund, which is working to find a model to help the fashion industry halve carbon emissions by 2030. The goal is to announce more donors in the coming months, each giving $10 million over eight years.
“By aligning industry leaders and climate-focused philanthropists behind scalable solutions, the Fashion Climate Fund opens a path for greater collaboration and cross-pollination of solutions, facilitating greater investment and stronger collective action toward the goal of the industry to cut emissions in half by 2030, while also pursuing climate justice for the citizens and communities where our fashion is made,” said AII President Lewis Perkins. “We are greatly encouraged by the leadership and determination shown by these lead partners today and are honored to play this role in opening this first phase of project funding.”
Many fashion brands and retailers have signed on to support the Science Based Targets (SBTi) initiative, which includes a goal of achieving net-zero value chain greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. However, AII found in a report recently that 96% of emissions in fashion come from farms and third-party factories, which are more difficult to control.
The Fashion Climate Fund aims to improve sustainability throughout the supply chain in areas such as electricity, materials, manufacturing and energy efficiency. The fund builds on AII’s Clean by Design program, which has deployed more than $12 million in funding for energy efficiency programs since 2018.
In another recent move toward sustainable practices, Lululemon in April expanded its “Lululemon Like New” trade-in and resale program to all US stores. Through the program, shoppers can trade in their used Lululemon items at more than 390 stores in exchange for a gift card.
For two years, H&M has partnered with Danone AQUA for the bottle2fashion project, transforming plastic waste into recycled polyester. Shein, another major player in the fast fashion space, also oversees programs that prioritize recycled materials for packaging content and seek responsibly sourced materials for its clothing.