Kering is taking a stand on environmental transparency with their Environmental Profit and Loss report, tracking the company’s environmental footprint. H&M recently released its own analysis on its environmental footprint and the steps it is taking to minimize its impact. Cool girl cult brand Reformation also released the “RefScale,” which tracks the amount of water and carbon dioxide the company uses to make its clothes. Kering is following these examples in this latest report, which finds that the majority of the environmental impact they have starts early in the production process.
“Three quarters of the total impacts are at the start of the supply chain – with half the impacts associated with raw material production and a further quarter of the images associated with raw material processing including leather tanning, refining metals and textile spinning,” it reads. This document measures the environmental impact in dollars and cents, as a “new way of estimating the cost to society of the changes in the environment as a result of our business activities and those of the whole of our supply chain,” the company says. “In contrast to financial accounting, there are currently no established and agreed standards for estimating this value.” Hopefully by putting the impact in terms of money, other businesses can comprehend what production is really doing to the environment. The report revealed that Kering had about $861.6 million dollars (€773 million euros) of impact on the environment in 2013. Half of Kering’s impact lies in the production of raw materials like leather and wool.
Kering also outlined what it’s trying to do to decrease their impact. For example, with leather, Kering is joining forces with Origem to seek out ways to source cow leather at a low impact. The report also mentions vertical integration, noting that the company has already purchased four tanneries so that they can have more control regarding the environmental cost of making leather. Kering has also adopted tanning methods that reduce energy use by 20% and water use by 30%.
If anything, the report positions Kering as a leader in attempting to create a more sustainable presence in the luxury markets. By joining forces with environmentally-minded groups that are working to decrease the impact clothing production has on the world, it seems Kering is really committed to making its environmental footprint smaller.