The 45th Group of Seven (G7) summit takes place this weekend, 24-26 August, in Biarritz, France. Participants include leaders from Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States. This is the first G7 summit for Boris Johnson, Britain's newly elected Prime Minister.
Included on the agenda this year is a 'Fashion Pact'. In April 2019, French President, Emmanuel Macron asked Kering's Chief Executive, François-Henri Pinault, to gather a coalition of fashion brands and retailers in a pledge to zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The agreement calls for more sustainable ways to source raw materials, a transition to renewable energy in manufacturing and a stamp out of single-use plastics by 2030. The goal is to incentivise brands to design clothes with a longer lifespan, to make them through environmentally friendly processes, and to ensure they can be recycled without augmenting the footprint.
The Fashion Pact sees about 150 brands – accounting for 30% of the fashion industry – come together to overturn the harmful cycle of throwaway consumer culture. On Monday 26 August, 2019, Pinault meets with President Macron and the rest of the G7 attendees to present the fashion industry's pledge. Brands that have signed include Chanel, Hermès, Burberry, Adidas, Nike, Inditext (parent company of Zara), H&M, Galeries Lafayette and Nordstrom.
When there are no legal repercussions for brands should they falter on their promises, one may feel skeptical. For G7 the Amazon wildfires are a key issue on the agenda, but will fashion address its responsibility in this crisis?