EU unveils new sustainable textile strategy


The European Union have mainly left particular person or firms to cope with textiles environmental impression. However, the EU wishes to step in and initiate laws that will assist the textiles trade management of its waste points higher.

The textile industry has also been recognized as a significant sector for the EU’s move towards sustainability in the European Green Deal and the New Industrial Strategy for Europe, due to its high use of resources and high impact on the environment.

According to the European Environment Agency (EEA), when it comes to EU household consumption, textiles (clothes, footwear and household textiles) are the fourth-worst pressure category for use of primary raw materials and water (after food, housing and transport).


It is the fifth-worst for greenhouse-gas emissions. Most of these pressures and impacts occur in other regions of the world as the majority of production takes place outside the EU. Still, the EU textile industry employs 1.7 million people in about 171 000 companies.

Still, according to the Commission’s communication on the NextGenerationEU, they could be severely hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In the Circular Economy Action Plan, the Commission announced that the EU Textile Strategy would include the following actions:

  • Applying the new sustainable product framework, by developing eco-design requirements to ensure that textile products are fit for circularity, ensuring the uptake of secondary raw materials, tackling the presence of hazardous chemicals and empowering businesses and consumers to choose sustainable textiles and ensuring easy access to reuse and repair;
  • Improving the business and regulatory environment for sustainable and circular textiles in the EU, by supporting the product-as-service models, circular materials and production processes and international cooperation for increased transparency;
  • Guiding separate textile waste collection, in line with the current Framework Waste Directive, which requires the Member States to set up a separate collection of waste textiles by 2025;
  • Increasing the sorting, re-use and recycling of textiles, including through innovation and measures such as extended producer responsibility.

Michael Schragger, Founder and govt Director of The Swedish Textile Initiative for Local weather Motion on the Vogue Future digital convention that kicked off Stockholm Vogue Week, recently said, “The EU Textile Technique is the one main alternative we’ve over the subsequent decade to create the incentives we have to make a change. Without regulation and financial incentives, it’s extraordinarily unlikely that we’re going to attain the important thing sustainability objectives.”

By way of laws and financial incentives, the brand-new Textile Technique will goal to spice up the EU markets for upcycling and sustainable textiles; deal with quick trends, and assist enterprise fashions that promote extra round consumption fashions.

Given the size of the European Union’s textiles and clothes industries — they make use of around 1.5 million folks cut up throughout 160,000 different corporations — and trend’s general contribution of over 10% of world emissions, there’s an urgency for policymakers to step in.

“These figures are large. If we hold to the script we’ve now, we received won’t be capable of flip the ship round till 2070. It may not be extra severe than it is already,” said Alice Bah Kuhnke, a European Union Parliament member.

The technique continues to be in growth, however, Bah Kuhnke highlighted that the EU desires to undertake a holistic method that engages producers as a lot as retailers and small enterprises.