Copenhagen Fashion Week Inks Sustainability Action Plan

Copenhagen Fashion Week has announced its new Sustainability Action Plan for 2020-2022 designed to reinforce the event’s sustainability profile and prompt the industry to accelerate its sustainability efforts.

The plan details how the fashion event will transition into becoming more sustainable through a series of commitments, including the reduction of its climate impact by 50% and rethinking waste systems in all aspects of event production, with a goal of zero waste by 2022. The plan also focuses on the bigger picture by outlining how Copenhagen Fashion Week will implement sustainability requirements and will set new standards for participation to push the industry toward necessary, comprehensive change.

“All industry players – including fashion weeks – have to be accountable for their actions and be willing to change the way business is done. The timeframe for averting the devastating effects of climate change on the planet and people is less than a decade, and we’re already witnessing its catastrophic impacts today. There can be no status quo,” explained in a statement Cecilie Thorsmark, CEO of Copenhagen Fashion Week.

“Copenhagen Fashion Week is the cultural and commercial meeting place of the Scandinavian fashion industry. This gives us an enormous responsibility and the potential to create impactful change in the industry at large. By taking this direction, we go from being a traditional event to being a platform for industry change,” she added.

The UN SDGs underpin the strategy, and it focuses on three of them in particular: SDG 12: Responsible consumption and production, SDG 13: Climate Action and SDG 17: Partnerships for the goals. Copenhagen Fashion Week is pledging to transition into sustainability while, at the same time, introducing new standards for any brand wishing to showcase their collections at the event within three years with a high risk of not being eligible to show.

“It’s not an issue that will be solved with a simple flick of the wrist. I believe that it’s our duty as a leading player in the fashion ecosystem to take a thorough look at how Copenhagen Fashion Week can serve to benefit the fashion industry’s sustainability agenda to the greatest extent possible. As a trendsetting fashion week, we need to help make sustainability attractive. We have a voice and an ethical obligation to use it,” continued Thorsmark.

It is a massive step in the right direction for any event –, especially within the fashion industry. Focusing on the repercussions of the event itself, alongside the showcase of conscious brands, has upped the game, although there is still much to be done. It is also the first time any fashion week event has taken sustainability so seriously and such a stance on brands’ guidelines for participating. 

The move follows the Swedish Fashion Council’s decision to cancel Stockholm Fashion Week back in 2019 to focus on more sustainable alternatives, making Copenhagen Fashion Week the only Scandinavian fashion week of the year.

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