VF commits to net-zero emissions by 2050 with signature of Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Change
today May 3, 2019
Greensboro, North Carolina-based lifestyle group VF Corporation announced on Thursday that it has become a signatory of the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Change, reinforcing its commitment to climate advocacy and sustainability.
VF, which owns Vans, The North Face, Timberland, Wrangler and Lee, therefore joins more than 40 companies working in the fashion and apparel industry that have committed to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050.
Other commitments involve reducing aggregate greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030, using methodologies set out in the Science-Based Targets Initiative to set a decarbonization pathway for the fashion industry, and moving towards circular business models.
Signatories also commit to engaging in dialogue with key governments around the world in order to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency.
“Prioritizing environmental and social responsibility is foundational to who we are and how we operate at VF,” said VF Chairman, President and CEO Steve Rendle in a release. “As one of the largest companies in our industry, we look forward to the opportunity to collaborate with our peers in the effort to pursue long-term, sustainable solutions to climate change.”
This is far from VF’s first eco-friendly action: in 2015 the company announced its goal to use 100% renewable energy by 2025, and many of its corporate offices already have LEED Platinum or Gold certification.
The company is also a signatory of the American Business Act on Climate Change Pledge and the We Are Still In movement.
Individual brands in the group’s portfolio have also undertaken their own sustainability initiatives, such as The North Face’s Cali Wool Collection, which uses climate-beneficial wool, or Timberland’s successful reduction of its greenhouse gas emissions by 50% between 2006 and 2015.
2019 is a year of big changes for VF, which is expecting to complete the spin-off of its denim business as a new publicly traded company, Kontoor Brands, Inc., in late May. The separation, which will see VF wave goodbye to its Wrangler, Lee and Rock & Republic brands, as well as its VF Outlet business, is intended to allow the two resulting companies to focus investment on their own strategic priorities.
When announcing its new environmental commitments on Thursday, VF further revealed that it is currently working on establishing new science-based climate targets which will be announced later this year.
The Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Change was first launched at the UN international climate negotiations held in Poland in December 2018. Other signatories include Adidas, PVH Corp, Kering Group, Gap Inc., H&M Group and Inditex.
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