Sustainable Apparel Coalition announces partnership with Apparel Impact Institute at Planet Textiles

  • Partnership and Collaboration
  • Planet Textiles
Amina Razvi and Kurt Kipka onstage at Planet Textiles 2023
June 15, 2023

New partnership with Apparel Impact Institute to provide opportunity to accelerate solutions to tackle climate change and work toward a more responsible textile and apparel industry

Milan, Italy – June 15, 2023: The Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) has today announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which outlines a new strategic partnership with the Apparel Impact Institute (Aii) on an initiative geared towards supporting efforts to accelerate and scale decarbonization programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions across the entire industry.

There is no doubt that the textile and apparel industry must transform to better serve the needs of people and the planet, and the recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report heightened the urgency with which everyone needs to work together to combat and reverse the effects of climate change. To help us keep within the 1.5°C limit, the textile and apparel industry needs to reduce its emissions by at least 43% by 2030 compared to 2019 levels, and at least 60% by 2035.

To help the industry achieve these targets, the SAC is collaborating with Aii on a number of key areas including research and ecosystem development related to unlocking finance to support the decarbonization of the industry; establishing a clear, standardized journey for suppliers, manufacturers, and brands setting impact targets; creating action plans; and tracking climate-related achievements, and industry engagement, on reporting and data sharing. Under this partnership, the first detailed agreement signed is focused on supporting the continued progress and development of the Climate Solutions Portfolio (CSP), a registry of proven carbon reduction solutions for the apparel industry, and the Fashion Climate Fund (FCF), a donor collaborative funding model to support the reduction of carbon emissions in the textile, apparel, and footwear industries’ supply chain, across tiers 1-4.

Andrew Martin, Executive Vice President at the Sustainable Apparel Coalition, said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Aii on this project. As an organization united by the belief that partnership is the new leadership, we see this collaboration as a unique opportunity to leverage our collective knowledge and technical expertise to drive meaningful change at scale. With time running out for us to reverse the worst impacts of climate change, the challenge we are facing is unprecedented and we cannot afford to lose any more time. We must, therefore, come together to co-create solutions that work towards a shift to a more responsible industry and deliver positive benefits to people and the planet.”

Kurt Kipka, Apparel Impact Institute Chief Impact Officer, said: “We are pleased to be furthering our long-standing relationship with the SAC. The organization has been an incredible support and a valued resource to many of Apparel Impact Institute’s initiatives and projects. We are at a critical point for our planet where we need to translate this momentum into real action immediately. Every player across the apparel & footwear industry’s value chain – large and small – has the collective power to do just that. We feel that our partnership with the SAC will only further that momentum.”

As an organization committed to leading the industry towards a shared vision of sustainability based on a multi-stakeholder approach, the SAC believes in the power of partnership to scale impact. Only through strategic collaborations with stakeholders across the industry to co-create and scale solutions can we catalyze the change we urgently need as we work towards a more responsible and sustainable textile and apparel industry.

Both the SAC and Aii are also founding members of the apparel alliance, alongside Textile Exchange and ZDHC. The alliance partners work to align goals, solutions, tools, and reporting, as well as events and training, to create a connected, end-to-end path to action for the entire apparel and footwear industry as they take collective steps to achieve a minimum goal of 45% reduction in GHG emissions by 2030.

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About the Sustainable Apparel Coalition:

The Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) an independent and impact-creating organization that aims to lead the industry toward a shared vision of sustainability based upon a joint approach for measuring, evaluating, and improving performance.

As a non-profit organization, it has members from across the apparel, footwear, and textile sector, but exists independently outside any one company so that it can drive progress. The SAC’s collective action efforts bring more than 280 global brands, retailers, manufacturers, NGOs, academics, and industry associations together. They represent about half of the apparel and footwear industry along the whole supply chain – from sustainability pioneers to organizations just getting started.

Before the SAC existed, companies worked in a siloed way, using their own programs and measurements that lacked standardization and an ability to drive collective action. In 2009, Walmart and Patagonia identified this as a serious problem. Joining forces, they brought together peers, competitors, and relevant stakeholders from across the sector to, on a pre-competitive basis, develop a universal approach to measuring sustainability performance and founded the Sustainable Apparel Coalition.

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About Apparel Impact Institute

Apparel Impact Institute is a non-profit collective founded in 2017 by NGO leaders: the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC), the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH) and Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC), alongside industry leaders Target Corporation, Gap Inc., PVH and HSBC. The organization emerged organically as a result of a real need that apparel brands and retailers self-identified.

Aii identifies, funds, and scales proven quality solutions to accelerate positive impact in the apparel and footwear industry. Aii programs focus on areas that result in positive environmental impact from the production of apparel and footwear products to improve the industry.

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