Past Meetup

WEBINAR - It’s Christmas – The Best Time To Think about Ethical Fashion

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Pamela Ravasio will present a webinar that looks at clothing manufacturing and pollution and the importance of thinking and buying ethically.

Pamela is a freelance business consultant for ethical fashion SMEs, a market researcher and a journalist. Pamela is further the founder and managing editor of Shirahime (http://shirahime.com), a blog
that focused on the topic of sustainability in fashion, and which in 2011 won the prestigious 'Observer Ethical Award' in the
category 'ethical blog'. Pamela has previously given a webinar and organised a meetup on ethical fashion.

A new investigative report from Greenpeace, entitled 'Dirty Laundry', profiles the problem of toxic water pollution resulting from the release of hazardous chemicals by the textile industry in China. The investigations focuses on two facilities that were found to be discharging a range of hazardous and persistent chemicals with hormone-disrupting properties. These results are indicative of a much wider problem that is posing serious and immediate threats to both our precious ecosystems and to human health.

In the follow up research commissioned by Greenpeace International ('Dirty Laundry 2') it is revealed that clothing and certain fabric-based shoes sold internationally by major clothing brands are manufactured using nonylphenol ethoxylates (NPEs). NPEs -- which are used as surfactants in textile production. They break down to form toxic substance called nonylphenol (NP) which is a persistent chemical with hormone-disrupting properties that builds up in the food chain, and is hazardous even at very low levels.

While Greenpeace did only analyse dye houses and brands that are – in the global context – ahead of their peers, the more worrying fact is: the vast majority of clothing brands have no means of telling if and what toxic substances are used in the manufacturing of their collections. And maybe worse: for a vast range of chemicals used in textile manufacturing, the long-term impacts on human and animal health and the environment are unclear, or even unknown, till this very day.

Greenpeace is challenging industry leading brands brands and suppliers to become champions for a toxic-free future – by eliminating all releases of hazardous chemicals from their supply chains and their products. And also governments have a crucial role to play by putting suitable frameworks into place and enforcing adherence and retrospective accountability.