Eliminating the ability for fast fashion websites to exist in first world countries will cause more people to frequent thrift stores and therefore lessen the amount of clothes in landfills leading to a healthier environment.
Journal of Cleaner Production, Life cycle assessment of clothing libraries: can collaborative consumption reduce the environmental impact of fast fashion?
“Fast fashion” is a supply model meant to get trends to consumers as quickly as possible for the cheapest price. Trends are constantly changing, making the practical service life of the clothes being purchased much shorter than the technical service life. The clothes are being thrown away before they have been worn to their full potential. The clothes were inexpensive to begin with and therefore are thrown away without much thought, leading to a huge environmental impact.
One solution to lessen the environmental impacts of fashion and lengthen the practical service life of clothes is collaborative consumption. Collaborative consumption is consumers exchanging the ownership distribution of a resource for a fee or other compensation. This includes when a resource is borrowed, swapped, traded or rented. Collaborative consumption is part of the sharing economy.
Bahareh Zamani, Gustav Sandin, Greg M. Peters, Life cycle assessment of clothing libraries: can collaborative consumption reduce the environmental impact of fast fashion?, Journal of Cleaner Production, Volume 162, 2017, Pages 1368-1375, ISSN 0959-6526, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.06.128.
Governance of sustainable supply chains in the fast fashion industry
There are three important theories to look at when considering the sustainability governance framework; sustainability theory, corporate social responsibility (CSR) and supply chain governance (SCG).
Sustainability theory measures the performance of the fast fashion supply chain in its entirety. It focuses on the benefit maximization which is based on the balance among society, environment and economy. Sustainability means the development of products meets the needs of the current generation without negatively affecting the needs of future generations. The “Triple Bottom Line” of sustainability is used because it encompases the importance of economic, environmental and social performances. This forces corporations to change their objectives to no longer only focus on the economical aspects.
Corporate social responsibility is applicable when companies integrate social and environmental concerns in their businesses. CSR is consistent with social expectations, which increases the corporation’s benefits and also improves its competitiveness and reputation. There are 2 ways a company can benefit from when implementing a strong strategic CSR. First, they can receive long-term benefits through participation in social projects that communicate the relationship of CSR and the corporate strategy. Second, they will attract customers who pay more attention to the sustainable attributes of a product. Strategic CSR is an effective tactic to combine and facilitate the sustainability governance of the fast fashion supply chain.
Supply chain governance focuses on gathering resources of all participants in a supply chain.SCG focuses on the institution, the structures and the mechanisms that guide, regulate and control the activities which emerge from stakeholders of the supply chain. SCG is a framework for how decision making is carried out in a supply chain. The focal company can ensure the maximum benefit for all supply chain participants by coordinating them and focusing on the sustainability of the supply chain.
Yongjian Li, Xiukun Zhao, Dan Shi, Xiang Li,Governance of sustainable supply chains in the fast fashion industry,European Management Journal,Volume 32, Issue 5,2014,Pages 823-836,ISSN 0263-2373,https://doi.org/10.1016/j.emj.2014.03.001.
The motivational drivers of fast fashion avoidance
Environmental and Social Impact of Fashion: Towards an Eco-friendly, Ethical Fashion
There are several major environmental impacts that fashion causes. There are environmental impacts based on the different fiber production for both natural and synthetic materials. Polyester, elastic and Lycra are the most common fibers found in wardrobes. These fibers are cheap and their manufacturing causes pollution along with the issue that they are difficult to recycle.Spinning, weaving and industrial manufacture undermine air quality. Dyeing and printing consume vast amounts of water and chemicals, and release numerous harmful agents into the atmosphere.
The economy relies on consumerism which was brought forward during the industrialization era. Economic growth began to depend on the production of new products that were marketed in a way to make consumers dispose of the old ones. Stylistic norms and societal pressures made the old products seem obsolete. Ethical fashion requires collaboration between designers, manufacturers and consumers to address the impact of production processes and consumption patterns.
Mukherjee, S. (2015). Environmental and social impact of fashion: Towards an eco-friendly, ethical fashion. International Journal of Interdisciplinary and Multidisciplinary Studies, 2(3), 22-35.
Slow Fashion in a Fast Fashion World: Promoting Sustainability and Responsibility
Fashion is among the world’s most polluting industries: it requires large quantities of raw materials, creates high levels of pollution, leaves a significant carbon footprint, and generates copious levels of waste. The relationship between the fashion industry’s need to continually evolve to satisfy consumers’ insatiable desire to acquire the latest trends and the loss of exclusivity as consumers acquire the most popular garments, shows that the fashion industry is inherently opposed to sustainability.
A movement to combat fast-fashion has arisen known as slow fashion which places emphasis on more sustainable practices. This movement naturally promotes sustainability through more ethical sourcing and production techniques as well as by using organic, recycled, or more durable materials. The labor involved in the production of such garments receives higher wages and greater protection than those in the supply chain of the fast fashion industry. While finished garments may cost more, they last longer and incorporate more timeless styles to combat the need for only wearing the latest trends. While this movement faces a hard battle against mass marketed designs it is important to recognize that there are movements out there trying to compete with fast fashion. Companies that do slow fashion practices should provide a template for the future of the global fashion industry.
Political economies and environmental futures for the sharing economy
On the platforms where the sharing economy is put into practice, people offer under-utilized goods that the consumers do not consume all the time and therefore have an excess. These consumers enter a positive-sum gain by lending or renting out their goods when they are not consuming them.
Collaborative consumption is an example of sustainable consumption because the consumer is avoiding the purchase of a first-hand consumption good. By using this method, the total number of goods in the economy can be reduced drastically without giving up consumer welfare.
Frenken Koen 2017 Political economies and environmental futures for the sharing economy Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A.3752016036720160367
Current state of my research
While I am happy with the sources I was able to find, when I have time this weekend I would like to look further into more solutions to the environmental impacts of fast fashion. Most of what I have found so far is just what the environmental impacts are.