UK Launches First Carbon Footprint Label for Retail Clothing

by | Mar 27, 2009

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carbontrustgarmentlogo1The UK fashion retail market has claimed the world’s first carbon footprint label for clothing. Continental Clothing, described as an ethical and eco-chic manufacturer, working with Carbon Trust, is launching the world’s first Carbon Reduction Label for textile products.

The project is part of the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs’ (Defra) sustainable clothing action plan launched at London Fashion Week in February by Sustainability Minister Lord Hunt. The new label will provide the carbon footprint of the entire lifecycle of the clothes, from raw materials and manufacturing, through to consumer use and disposal.

BSI British Standards, the Carbon Trust and Defra launched a new standard last year to help businesses assess the carbon footprint of their goods and services. The standard measures the GHG emissions in goods and services throughout their entire life cycle.

The Carbon Reduction Label for textiles will be displayed on a range of printed T-shirts and sweatshirts, and will inform the consumer of the total lifecycle footprint as well as their own contribution through washing, tumble-drying and ironing. Carbon labeled clothing is available in the UK at

Continental Clothing played a key role in the footprinting of textile products in the Carbon Trust’s pilot program, which is aimed at a low carbon economy. The footprinting study, conducted by Continental Clothing, reveals that as much as half of the total footprint of clothing can come from consumers’ home laundry activities. It also provides information on impacts throughout the entire supply chain.

Playing its part in a low carbon economy, the clothing company has reduced its CO2 emissions in its manufacturing operation by 90 percent through the use of renewable energy and a low-footprint production approach.

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