Gucci goes carbon neutral in attempt to tackle climate crisis
As the fashion industry continues to address its role in the climate crisis, Italy's most valuable luxury brand has said it has become an entirely carbon-neutral company.
Gucci outlined its new climate strategy on Thursday (12 September), which stretches from its supply chain to its fashion shows and comprises a mixture of reduction, elimination and offsetting what it calls “unavoidable emissions”.
“The more time that goes by, the more reports from the scientists are clear – the planet has gone too far,” the chief executive, Marco Bizzarri, told the Guardian.
Companies often equate being carbon neutral – the action of removing the same amount of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as they put in to it, whether it be from production, to transport to packaging – to offsetting its directly managed usage.
By incorporating its entire supply chain into its strategy, which includes external businesses such as the tanneries, Bizzarri says the brand is targeting the part of its production that causes the most damage. The company says the early supply chain currently accounts for 90% of its greenhouse gas emissions.
Gucci will be reliant on its environmental profit and loss report to identify where greenhouse gases are being emitted so they know which areas need to be reviewed as well as finding out what needs to be offset.
It will partner with Redd+ – a UN project to reduce emissions from deforestation – on four projects that support forest conservation in Peru, Kenya, Indonesia and Cambodia to offset carbon emissions it cannot eliminate.
Addressing the scepticism surrounding carbon offsetting, Bizzarri acknowledged that over time and with the advancement of technology, there will be improved ways to reduce emissions without the need for offsetting.
“But if we wait to be perfect, in terms of the calculation of impact or methodology, to me it’s just an excuse for not doing it,” he said. “More and more, we just need to act. We are not perfect [and] it’s not a matter of saying we are the best, it’s a matter of showing it can be done, and hopefully [others] will follow this path.”