It’s no surprise to most Heddels readers that the fashion industry (writ large) is a huge polluter and a sneaky one at that. Fashion brands are notoriously opaque, doing everything in their power to conceal the waste and abuse that allows them to churn out millions of garments with the widest possible margins.
The only way to enact major change is to hold these companies accountable, which a new New York law might just do. The Fashion Sustainability and Social Accountability Act would (at least in New York State) begin a long-delayed process of holding huge fashion brands accountable and forcing them to allow people a look into how the proverbial sausage is made. Companies with more than $100 million in worldwide revenues to map their suppliers, chart their energy use and pollution levels, and reveal the salaries of their workers along the supply chain. Not only this, but all this information would be public and easily accessible by customers.
As of now, it’s very hard for the average consumer to make educated choices about their fashion consumption. This isn’t just because people don’t care, it’s also because brands have a vested interest in concealing just how messed up their practices are. Democratizing this information would be an incredible way to begin changing the whole industry!