Fashion Energy Report

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    Fashion Energy Report

    As important as it is to compare business energy rates to get the best deal, you must consider the source of energy and the effect this could have on the environment. While some businesses have outlined initiatives to reduce their carbon footprint, many companies, and in some cases entire industries, still need to catch up.

    The fashion industry, which is believed to use more than 90 billion cubic metres of water yearly, is a prime example of this. The amount of water used annually in fashion is enough to meet the needs of five million people, and what’s even more concerning is that this is expected to double by 2030.

    In fact, as of 2022, the fashion industry was responsible for 10% of the world’s carbon dioxide emissions – more than international flights and shipping. Despite these alarming statistics, many companies have outlined plans to be more environmentally friendly.

    But which fashion brands are succeeding the most? We’ve looked into sustainability scores, transparency and website carbon emissions to reveal the most sustainable fashion brands.

    Puma is the most sustainable fashion brand, with a sustainability score of 9.63/10

    Many companies across the world are creating initiatives to be more environmentally friendly. To determine which brands have put in the most effort, we’ve looked at sustainability ratings, transparency, and the amount of CO2 produced when their website is visited.

    The top 10 most sustainable fashion brands

    1. Puma – 9.63 sustainability score

    The most sustainable fashion brand is Puma, with an almost perfect score of 9.63 out of 10. Puma is a German company that predominantly manufactures athletic apparel, accessories and footwear. Not only is Puma a leading manufacturer in the world of sport, but it is also a leader in sustainability with a high sustainability rating, a high level of transparency, and a low amount of CO2 produced whenever someone visits their website.

    2. The North Face – 8.84 sustainability score

    In second place is The North Face, with a sustainability score of 8.84 out of 10. The North Face designs clothes and equipment for outdoor recreation, including skiing, hiking, and camping. Sustainability has been a massive focus for the American company, and by 2025, it aims to manufacture all clothing using 100% responsibly sourced materials.

    3. Tommy Hilfiger – 8.19 sustainability score

    Completing our top three is Tommy Hilfiger, with a sustainability score of 8.19 out of 10. Tommy Hilfiger is one of the most recognised brands in the world, recording more than $9 billion in sales in 2022. Part of Tommy Hilfiger’s climate action plan involves all stores and distribution centres being 100% powered by renewable energy by 2030.

    The top 10 most sustainable fashion brands

    These four fashion brands have the best sustainability rating - all scoring 4 out of 5

    To give each fashion brand a sustainability rating out of five, good on you considers the treatment of workers, environmental policies, and its effect on animals. We’ve looked at some of the world’s biggest fashion brands to determine which have the highest sustainability rating.

    Fashion brands with the best sustainability rating

    Puma – 4/5 sustainability rating

    Puma takes the top spot again, with a sustainability rating of 4/5. Puma’s emphasis on recycling is pivotal to its high rating, as the German brand uses recycled materials alongside other lower-impact fabrics. Puma also offers a clothing recycling program called Bring Me Back to combat end-of-life textile waste. Customers can bring used shoes, clothes, and accessories to Puma stores, which will be reused or recycled for new products.

    The North Face – 4/5 sustainability rating

    The North Face has a formal animal welfare policy, which helps it to rank high on this list. It’s down is certified by the Responsible Down Standard and doesn’t use fur, exotic animal skin, exotic animal hair, or angora. Other contributing factors include its science-based target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and its policies to protect workers from the impact of COVID-19. All are significant reasons why the North Face scores a sustainability rating of 4/5.

    Timberland – 4/5 sustainability rating

    The next fashion brand to share the top spot is Timberland, which also has a 4/5 sustainability rating. Similarly to The North Face, Timberland’s animal welfare policies help drive its overall sustainability rating. It has a formal policy aligned with the Five Freedoms of Animal Welfare and uses recycled wool, leather, and down.

    Patagonia – 4/5 sustainability rating

    The final fashion company sharing the top spot is Patagonia. Patagonia uses low-impact materials, which limit chemicals and wastewater, as well as recycled wool, down, and exotic animal hair. Its worker treatment also helps Patagonia’s overall rating, with the Fair Labor Association (FLA) accrediting its final production stage. Workers in this production stage are also paid living wages, contributing to Patagonia’s 4/5 sustainability rating.

    These nine fashion brands have the worst sustainability rating at 1/5

    Using the same data, we have revealed the fashion brands with the worst sustainability rating.

    Fashion brands with the worst sustainability rating

    The nine fashion brands with a sustainability rating of 1 out of 5 are Furla, Tory Burch, Nine West, SHEIN, Dolce & Gabbana, Skechers, Max Mara, Reebok, and Tom Ford. These nine brands rank poorly due to their company’s impact on the environment and animals and their treatment of workers.

    Nordstrom’s website produces less CO2 than any other fashion brand, at 0.03g of CO2 per page visit

    The fashion brand websites producing the least CO2 per page visit

    1. Nordstrom – 0.03g of CO2 produced per page visit

    Taking the top spot is Nordstrom, with just 0.03g of CO2 produced per page visit. The American company originally opened as a shoe store but has since branched out to clothing and accessories. Nordstrom’s website is so efficient that if visited 10,000 times a month, it would emit as much carbon as one tree would absorb in a year.

    2. Puma/Calvin Klein – 0.29g of CO2 produced per page visit

    Puma and Calvin Klein share second place, with 0.29g of CO2 produced per page visit. Both websites are cleaner than 68% of websites across the world. If their websites had 10,000 monthly page visits, it would produce enough energy to charge a smartphone 7,500 times.

    3. Tommy Hilfiger – 0.36g of CO2 produced per page visit

    Completing our top three is Tommy Hilfiger, with 0.36g of CO2 produced per page visit. This brand’s website is cleaner than 62% of websites globally. Over a year, with 10,000 monthly page visits, this website would produce the same amount of energy as two trees would absorb.

    Aldo’s website produces 7.51g of CO2 when visited, more than any other fashion brand

    All websites have a carbon footprint, which can be affected by the energy source used by the data centre, the energy intensity of the web data, and the data transfer over the wire. With online shopping so crucial for these companies, we wanted to know which fashion brands’ websites produce the most CO2 per page visit.

    The fashion brand websites producing the most CO2 per page visit

    1. Aldo – 7.51g of CO2 produced per page visit

    Aldo takes the top spot, with 7.51g of CO2 produced when their website is visited. Aldo is a Canadian brand that manufactures shoes and accessories for an affordable price. If Aldo’s website were visited 10,000 times a month, it would produce more than 900kg of CO2 annually.

    2. Hugo Boss – 4.83g of CO2 produced per page visit

    In second place is Hugo Boss, with 4.83g of CO2 produced per page visit. Hugo Boss are one of the biggest brands in the world, selling clothes, accessories, footwear, and fragrances. If its website is visited 10,000 times a month for a year, it would produce enough CO2 to boil water for 78,000 cups of tea.

    3. Abercrombie & Fitch – 4.16g of CO2 produced per page visit

    Our top three is completed by Abercrombie & Fitch, with 4.16g of CO2 produced every time its website is visited. If Abercrombie & Fitch’s website is seen 10,000 times a month, it would produce enough energy to drive an electric car over 8,000 kilometres annually.

    Uniqlo would have to plant more than 200,000 trees a month to offset the CO2 produced from its website

    We’ve looked at monthly page visits and grams of CO2 produced for each of the 10 fashion brands producing the most CO2 per page visit in order to reveal the brands that would need to plant the most trees to offset its website's emissions.

    The number of trees required to offset fashion website CO2 emissions

    1. Uniqlo – 216,407 trees to absorb the CO2 produced from its website

    Taking the top spot is Uniqlo, whose website emits enough CO2 to be absorbed by more than 200,000 trees a month. Uniqlo is one of the world’s biggest brands in the world, and their website certainly reflects this. Each month, Uniqlo’s website attracts more than 100,000 visitors, producing more than 4 million grams of CO2.

    2. Abercrombie & Fitch – 37,691 trees to absorb the CO2 produced from its website

    In second place is Abercrombie & Fitch, whose website produces enough CO2 to be absorbed by almost 40,000 trees each month. Abercrombie & Fitch attracts over 16 million visitors every month, which means its website produces almost 830,000 grams of CO2.

    3. Asics – 33,595 trees to absorb the CO2 produced from its website

    Asics completes our top three, with its website producing enough CO2 for 33,500 trees to absorb each month. Asics is one of the leading brands in the running industry, manufacturing shoes, clothes and accessories. Each month, Asics attracts 18.5 million visitors to its website, which produces more than 700,000 grams of CO2.

    CO2 Offset table

    Gucci are the most transparent fashion brand, with a transparency index of 80%

    Being transparent with your customers is important so that they know where products come from and how they are made. Each year, ISSUU looks at public disclosure of human rights and environmental policies, practices, and impacts across some of the biggest fashion companies' operations and supply chains. We’ve delved into the 2023 edition of ISSUU’s Transparency Index to reveal the most transparent fashion brands.

    The most transparent fashion brands

    1. Gucci – 80% transparency index

    The most transparent fashion brand is Gucci, with a transparency index of 80%. Gucci is one of the biggest names in fashion, producing luxury clothes, accessories, shoes, and cosmetics. In the past, luxury fashion brands have earned a reputation for secrecy. However, Gucci has stepped away from this assumption.

    2. H&M – 71% transparency index

    The second most transparent fashion brand is H&M, with a transparency index of 71%. H&M are one of the more affordable brands on our list. In 2022, 84% of its materials were recycled or sustainably sourced; by 2040, it aims to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions.

    3. Puma/The North Face/Timberland – 66% transparency index

    Puma, The North Face, and Timberland complete our top three, all with a transparency index of 66%. Puma, The North Face, and Timberland were all high-ranking companies in our overall list, ranking first, second and fifth, respectively.

    These two luxury brands are the least transparent in fashion, with a transparency index of 0%

    Using the same index as above, we have revealed the least transparent fashion brands.

    The least transparent fashion brands

    1. Max Mara/Tom Ford – 0% Transparency Index

    The crown for the least transparent fashion brand is shared between two companies, Max Mara and Tom Ford, both with a transparency index of 0%. Max Mara and Tom Ford are two luxury brands from Italy and the US, respectively. However, luxury brands have a reputation for secrecy, and the transparency index of these brands doesn’t help this claim.

    2. Tory Burch/Nine West/Reebok – 1% Transparency Index

    Three fashion brands take second place with a transparency index of 1%. The three brands are Tory Burch, Nine West, and Reebok. Tory Burch and Nine West are designer brands manufacturing luxury footwear, accessories, and handbags. Reebok, on the other hand, is a sporting goods company that mainly sells footwear and clothing.

    3. Dolce & Gabbana/Longchamp – 2% Transparency Index

    Our top three is completed by Dolce & Gabbana and Longchamp, with a transparency index of 2%. The French leather goods company Longchamp produces handbags, luggage, and footwear accessories. Dolce & Gabbana are a luxury brand from Italy, specialising in clothing, accessories, and handbags.

    Four expert tips to reduce your business's carbon footprint

    Climate change is impacting our planet at an alarming rate. Therefore, companies need to reduce their carbon footprint and practise sustainable measures. Here are four tips from Utility Bidder’s experts on reducing your business’s carbon footprint.

    1. Measure your carbon footprint

    Measuring your carbon footprint is crucial as it can help you understand your business’s impact on the environment. You can establish realistic targets and measure your yearly progress by measuring your carbon footprint. It can also help you see which areas of your business are more harmful than others, making it easier to understand how to tackle this. There are many tools available online to help you measure your carbon footprint.

    2. Switch to renewable energy

    Not only is it essential to get the best business energy rates possible, but it’s also important to consider where your energy comes from. The primary renewable energy source in the UK comes from wind turbines, which generate around 13% of Britain’s total electricity. Many businesses and homeowners have also installed solar panels to generate electricity.

    3. Switch to sustainable suppliers

    The companies you choose to work with can also affect your carbon footprint. It’s vital that you and your suppliers are transparent with each other so that you are aware of how they practise their business. Ensure your suppliers are using recyclable materials and practising sustainable measures.

    4. Upgrade your office’s lighting and heating systems

    Working from home has become the norm in the last couple of years. However, many people are returning to the office. To make your office more environmentally friendly, upgrading your lighting and switching to LED bulbs is a great place to start. Upgrading your heating system is another excellent way to improve your carbon footprint. You can do this by switching to oil-filled heaters, which are up to 99% energy efficient.

    Methodology

    To create a seeding list of fashion brands, we used a variety of seeding lists like the ones from YouGov and Fashion United.

    We used good on you for the sustainability rating out of five.

    We used Website Carbon Calculator for the amount of CO2 produced every time its website is visited.

    We then used Semrush to find the number of monthly page visits for the top 10 fashion brands producing the most CO2 per page visit. We then used Website Carbon Calculator again to find the number of trees it would take to absorb the CO2 produced.

    For the Transparency Index percentages, we used ISSUU.

    We put these factors into a weighted table, giving each factor a normalised score out of 10. We then took an average of these scores to give an overall score out of 10.

    All data is accurate as of 04/12/2023

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