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Now more than ever, Earth Month, with a dedicated Earth Day on April 22nd, has never been more important. In fact, 2020 marked the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, set up back in 1970 with the intention to encourage education and address global environmental issues.
While this year’s Earth Month and Earth Day anniversary may have been overshadowed by the global COVID-19 crisis, however the crisis itself has worked to highlight that the planet is able to recover quickly when given the opportunity, and one of the positives to come out of the lockdown situation is that pollution levels have fallen by 60%, and it has been widely reported that our planet is beginning to heal a little. Surely this should be a wake-up call to everyone about how we treat the planet and perhaps food for thought as to how we will travel, work and generally live in the future?
To mark Earth Month and the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, the TENCEL™ brand team in USA executed a month-long social media & digital campaign to promote environmental responsibility. In partnership with 27 dedicated brand partners, each day of Earth Month, leading up to Earth Day on April 22nd, the TENCEL™ brand and our brand partners highlighted one brand and the good work they are doing every day to both sustain and improve the longevity of our planet. Furthermore, through the collaboration with 9 influencer partners, the campaign also encouraged TENCEL™ fans and the general public to live a more sustainable lifestyle.
The campaign also provided the opportunity to reinforce long term strategies such as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This incorporates 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet. The plan provides an urgent call for action by all countries (both developed and developing), in a global partnership. They recognize that ending poverty and other deprivations must go hand-in-hand with strategies that improve health and education, reduce inequality, and spur economic growth – all while tackling climate change and working to preserve our oceans and forests.
Of the 2020 Earth Month Campaign, Director of Global Business Development of TENCEL™ Denim, Tricia Carey, shared, “this year, more than ever, it has been imperative to raise awareness for Earth Day and the mission driven for the past half- century. Realizing how interconnected we are in the world, collaborations with our brand partners will allow strides in reducing environmental impacts and ultimately achieving results for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.”
Sustainable shoe brand, and TENCEL™ brand partner, Allbirds is continuously strengthening its commitment to sustainability. Allbirds has become the first brand to label their products with a carbon footprint counter, along the lines of calorie information printed on processed food.
Sustainability has arguably become the most important issue in fashion and textiles over the last few years along with transparency and production ethics. The global eco fiber market size is growing, with natural eco fibers the second largest segment - accounting for 22.6% of the global market.
Many clothing brands, including TENCEL™ brand partners Guess and Mara Hoffman, have slowly moved away from traditional textile production and sourcing in view of this trend. The Guess eco-conscious collection “SmartGUESS” now features sustainable materials for 15% of their entire collection, while Mara Hoffman have continued adopting eco-friendly materials in its SS20 collection as the brand had been for a few seasons already.
Sarah Hayes, Senior Manager for Materials, Innovation and Development at Patagonia said, “We’ve been working with Lenzing since 2003 and we love TENCEL™ branded fibers. We like it for its technical properties, it’s soft, it’s strong, it has amazing drape. The absorbency makes it super comfortable to wear in hot weather. We also really like the work Lenzing does in sustainability, we love the fact that TENCEL™ Lyocell is produced in a closed-loop manufacturing process with a non-toxic solvent. And most excitingly for us was Lenzing pioneering to bring REFIBRA™ to market.” (The REFIBRA™ technology can now feature up to 30% of pulp produced from upcycled cotton scraps.)
Ultimately, the 2020 Earth Month campaign had garnered over 2.2 million impressions across both traditional and social media, as well as excitement and praise from our brand partners during this difficult time. To learn more about TENCEL™ x Earth Month, please tap this link: www.tencel.com/earth-day-2020
The 50th anniversary of Earth Month has been like no other, accompanying the climate crisis is the COVID-19 crisis, human health and planetary health are inextricably linked. To protect one, we must protect the other and, as some brands have begun to show us, the best way to do this is to work together.