Promoting environmental sustainability is a defining element of Italian craftsmanship - even in the fashion industry. This is the main goal that the Ministry of Environment is pursuing with some of the most famous Italian fashion brands, such as Giorgio Armani Operations, Benetton, Canepa, Cruciani, Brunello Cucinelli, Fabiana Filippi, Galaxy, Geox, Gucci, and Pielle Italia.
The results of the Ministry's program to evaluate the environmental footprint of the Italian fashion industry will be presented on February 20 during Milan Fashion Week with an event at LARTE, the new creative space in Milan dedicated to promote the synergies between food and Made in Italy sustainable fashion.
Speakers will include Corrado Clini, Director General of the Ministry of the Environment, Andrea Illy, President of Altagamma, Davide Rampello, Director of the Zero Pavilion at Expo 2015, Franca Sozzani, Editor-in-Chief of Vogue Italy, and Lucia Grenna, Program Manager of Connect4Climate.
What are the links between fashion and sustainability? How to “green” the fashion industry and promote best practices? In order to answers these questions, Connect4Climate (C4C) in partnership with the Italian Ministry, Vogue Italy, and the National Chamber of Fashion (CNMI) and the Ethical Fashion Forum will announce the upcoming launch of the new sustainable fashion competition “Next4Climate” – asking young talented designers to submit their ideas and concepts for a sustainable fashion collection.
“We need to talk to the most diverse sectors and adopt an all of the above approach if we want to solve the climate challenge” – said Lucia Grenna, Program Manager at Connect4Climate. “Fashion has the extraordinary power of setting trends and changing people’s behaviors, and we want to harness its fantastic influence to help Connect4Climate’s mission of spreading awareness about climate change, encouraging people to take action and trigger the climate change global movement. As president Jim Yong Kim said,’ we will never end poverty if we don’t tackle climate change’.”
Connect4Climate (C4C) is a global partnership program dedicated to raising global awareness about climate change. With over half a million fans and followers on Facebook, Twitter and other social networks, C4C has created an ever-expanding community, composed of individuals and organizations from around the world, united by the desire to share experiences and discover new solutions in the fight against climate change.
C4C’s commitment to engage with the fashion industry is reflected in the partnership with Italian company Cruciani for the realization of the “C4C green bracelets” that people can wear in support of the climate global movement.
The Italian Ministry for the Environment program to reduce environmental (carbon and water) footprint now involves more than 200 companies, municipalities and universities. All of these entities are cooperating in a large scale experiment to optimize different methods of measuring their environmental performances, taking into account the needs and costs of the different sectors with the aim of harmonizing and replicating these measurements.
Companies can join this program through voluntary agreements with the Ministry, or through public selection procedures promoted and financed by the Ministry that take place both in Italy and abroad. The objective is to identify procedures for "carbon management" and support implementation of low-carbon technologies and best practices during the production phase and the rest of the life cycle of products and services.
"The Italian fashion system,” said Clini “is committed to combining the quality of its products with a deep concern for sustainability. This means not only adopting strategies and production processes that have a minimal environmental impact, but also – perhaps more importantly – searching for new materials and innovative solutions that enhance the competitiveness of our fashion industry and consolidate its international excellence.”
Corrado Clini, former Director General Italian Ministry of Environment, Land and Sea, addresses the audience at the event at LARTE during Milan Fashion Week
The initiative represents a new drive for global competitiveness by Italian companies that takes into account the demand for environmentally-friendly products both at home and internationally. The initiative also aims to stimulate greater environmental examination of the production and distribution cycles of products, as well as new awareness in the consumers that will lead to more responsible choices and more environmentally virtuous behaviors.
The program is implemented in collaboration with "CURSA" (University Consortium for Research and Socioeconomic Environment) and "Studiare Sviluppo.”