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Stella McCartney announces open source sustainability initiative and UN partnership

Designer Stella McCartney
Designer Stella McCartney

Vegan designer Stella McCartney has announced a new sustainability initiative, as well as a partnership with the United Nations, hoping to encourage the industry to take more actionable steps towards sustainability.

Speaking on stage at the Business of Fashion’s VOICES conference in the UK, the designer announced Stella McCartney Cares Green, which will offer open source information to empower other businesses, students and policymakers to fight for change.

“One of the things I’m most excited about is creating some sort of fund for lawyers and NGOs, creating some sort of policy change,” said McCartney. According to the designer, there is only so much fashion brands can do before they encounter obstacles put in place by lawmakers. For example, the brand does not market its perfumes in China, as the country enforces a law whereby any makeup or skincare needs to be tested on animals. Meanwhile in the US, the label is taxed 40% for bringing in non-leather goods into the country.

The initiative will also give incentives such as scholarships and support to new designers, as well as educate the general industry on how technology can be best deployed to spur sustainability on.

This is the sister arm to the Stella McCartney Cares Pink initiative, launched in October, which focuses on another big passion of the designer’s: breast cancer awareness.

Also announced at the conference was a charter developed between Stella McCartney and the UN, which details 16 commitments to help fashion companies curb the damage they do to the planet. The full charter will be launched at the COP 24 sustainability convention on December 10 in Poland, but the designer used her platform to already urge fashion executives in the room to join.

“Everything is at stake,” said Stella. “It’s really about bringing everyone together as an industry, and instead of having a few people talk about it, it’s having everyone talk about it and the leaders actually taking responsibility, putting our money where our mouth is and making an amazing change together.”

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