“Too Dirty to Wear” campaign launched at Levi’s headquarters, calling on company to drastically reduce its climate pollution
December 13, 2017
Stand.earth wants Levi’s to be a fashion industry leader in protecting our climate by reducing pollution, transitioning to renewable energy in supply chain
SAN FRANCISCO, CA — This morning, Stand.earth launched its “Too Dirty to Wear” campaign targeting Levi Strauss & Co. with a protest at Levi’s Headquarters in San Francisco, calling on the iconic jean company to be a fashion industry leader in protecting our climate by reducing pollution and transitioning to renewable energy in its entire supply chain.
Protesters hung a banner above the company’s sign at their headquarters at 1155 Battery Street in downtown San Francisco, changing the company’s name to “LEVI STRAUSS & CO2.” Others delivered an open letter to Levi’s employees encouraging them to call on Levi’s management to make ambitious climate commitments.
“Levi’s has taken some good steps toward sustainability, but when it comes to our climate, Levi’s is a major polluter,” said Todd Paglia, Executive Director at Stand.earth. “Levi’s jeans are made at hundreds of factories around the globe that run largely on coal and other fossil fuels. These dirty fuels accelerate climate change and create significant air pollution that endangers the health of local communities. As a beloved and iconic brand, Levi’s is singularly positioned to become a climate leader and help drive the entire apparel industry toward sustainability.”
“Levi’s lags behind other major U.S. corporations such as Apple and Mars, who have made groundbreaking climate commitments by transitioning their entire supply chains away from fossil fuels and toward renewable energy,” said Kristina Flores, Climate Campaigner at Stand.earth. “Levi’s can demonstrate exceptional leadership by catalyzing the demand for renewable energy in China, India and other countries where their factories are located, accelerating the shift away from coal and other fossil fuels.”
Learn more about the climate impact from Levi’s and the entire apparel industry at stand.earth/toodirtytowear. Join the campaign and sign an open letter to Levi’s at stand.earth/action/levis-too-dirty-wear.
The “Too Dirty to Wear” campaign calls on Levi’s to make the following climate commitments:
- Make a leadership-level climate commitment for the full supply chain to meet or beat the Paris Climate Agreement, a 30-40% absolute reduction in total greenhouse gas emissions by 2025.
- Transition the entire supply chain to renewable energy, with a minimum of 50% of energy sourced through renewables by 2035.
- Commit to a long-term carbon emission reduction target of 66% by 2050 for the entire supply chain.
While Levi’s has made changes in operations at its headquarters and stores in the United States, the company has no firm climate commitments for up to 90% of its climate pollution, which is based largely in the company’s supply chain. Levi’s current climate initiatives include reducing emissions by 25% and switching to 20% renewable energy by 2020 in their direct operations.
“Levi’s current climate commitments are important steps, but much more is urgently needed,” said Todd Paglia, Executive Director of Stand.earth. “Right now, wildfires are raging throughout Southern California and the science is clear: increasing climate change will result in more devastating fires like these. Already, climate change kills more than 300,000 people each year. Levi’s CEO Chip Bergh has the opportunity to help his company fully realize its own core values of empathy and integrity by leading the apparel industry toward groundbreaking climate solutions.”
Background: Levi’s climate impact
- Coal is the top source of electricity in Levi’s factories in its main supplying countries. Levi’s products are made in 170 factories in China, where coal powers 70% of the electrical grid, and 44 factories in India, where coal powers 75% of the electrical grid.
- Levi’s annual climate pollution is vast — equal to that of 1.1 million cars, or more than 5 million metric tons of greenhouse gases emissions, according to the company’s own disclosures via CDP.
- Manufacturing a single pair of Levi’s 501 jeans produces the climate pollution equivalent of burning 21 pounds of coal.
Background: Apparel industry
- Recent studies show the industry is responsible for 3.0 to 5.4% of all climate emissions globally when the full supply chain is considered.
- This means that if the apparel industry were a nation, it would be the fourth largest climate polluter on Earth, creating more climate pollution each year than the entire country of Russia. The industry would be the world’s seventh largest economy if ranked alongside countries’ GDP.
- The number of garments produced annually has more than doubled since 2000.
Media contact: Karen Mahon, International Campaigns Director, Stand.earth, 604-836-5992, firstname.lastname@example.org