Throwaway Fashion Tax Rejection By UK Government Criticised By EAC

Image Courtesy of UK Parliament

Image Courtesy of UK Parliament

The UK Parliament’s Environmental Committee’s  new Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) scheme to reduce textile waste with a one penny charge per garment on producers. was not accepted.by the government and will not be implemented.

Surprisingly, the veteran Fashion Campaigner  Katherine Hamnett agreed with the Government’s rejection, insisting that the only way forward was to champion a world-wide level playing field in salaries standards and conditions , so that third world exploitation would stop, and fashion would play a more responsible role in the world economy.

Yet responding  for the  Committee,  Environmental Audit  Chair Mary Creagh MP said:

“Fashion producers should be forced to clear up the mountains of waste they create.

The Government has rejected our call, demonstrating that it is content to tolerate practices that trash the environment and exploit workers despite having just committed to net zero emission targets.

“The Government is out of step with the public who are shocked by the fact that we are sending 300,000 tonnes of clothes a year to incineration or landfill.

Ministers have failed to recognise that urgent action must be taken to change the fast fashion business model which produces cheap clothes that cost the earth.”

“Fashion shouldn’t cost the earth. Our insatiable appetite for clothes comes with a huge social and environmental price tag: carbon emissions, water use, chemical and plastic pollution are all destroying our environment.

“In the UK we buy more clothes per person than any other country in Europe. ‘Fast fashion’ means we overconsume and under use clothes.

As a result, we get rid of over a million tonnes of clothes, with £140m worth going to landfill, every year.

“Fashion retailers must take responsibility for the clothes they produce.

That means asking producers to consider and pay for the end of life process for their products through a new Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) scheme.

The Government must act to end the era of throwaway fashion by incentivising companies that offer sustainable designs and repair services.

Children should be taught the joy of making and mending clothes in school as an antidote to anxiety and the mental health crisis in teenagers.

Consumers must play their part by buying less, mending, renting and sharing more.”