The past few years, fashion industry was increasingly under the spotlight as second largest industrial polluter, having significant concerns regarding global environmental and social issues. Enormous amount of natural resources exploitation, water pollution, drastically high energy consumption, the spread of fast fashion, lack of fair, decent and ethical working conditions, forced child labor, over production and over consumption are only some of those global issues that seek urgent solutions. In terms of digitalization and innovative ideas, this branch of industry lags far behind other industrial sectors, not mentioning the rapidly changing consumer expectations, trends and needs the industry has to adapt to.
Goal 12 attempts to reduce the ecological footprint of the population through conscious material footprint, domestic material consumption, international agreements and cooperation on hazardous waste, strengthening the importance of recycling and circular economy. The efficient management of natural resources, and the way how these toxic waste and pollutants are disposed, are important targets to achieve this goal. Encouraging industries, businesses and consumers to recycle and reduce waste is equally important, as is supporting developing countries to move towards more sustainable patterns of consumption by 2030 through 11 sub-targets, making measurable the results with 13 indicators.
As far as the SDGs seek international cooperation, involving governments, NGOs, civil society, business sector and individuals as well, the most important tool is creating new collaboration and partnership and strengthen the already existing ones as well. Initiatives to educate market players like consumers, designers, retailers more sustainably aware would help to understand the importance of circular and sharing economy and business models. Conducting an appropriate communication, making stakeholder being more aware of their choice of fashion industry products, gradual modernization and employment of innovative ideas would also lead to a more sustainable consumption and production.
Find out more: https://sdgs.un.org/goals/goal12