"Saving our planet will require a dressing room revolution. #600


An action plan worth €1 billion over 6 years should enable the textile industry and consumers to accelerate the shift towards the circular economy. Explanations in this article co-signed by the Secretary of State for Ecology, Bérangère Couillard, and the Minister for Ecological Transition and Territorial Cohesion, Christophe Béchu.

Sustainable fashion has already made its way into the daily lives of the French. More and more of them are asking themselves about the environmental impact of their consumption choices. According to an Ipsos study, almost two thirds of French people now take into account the environmental impact of the products they consume and 78% of them have already carried out at least one sustainable fashion practice. Every year, we use twice the amount of resources that the earth can regenerate in one year. It has therefore become urgent to question our modes of consumption as much as our modes of production.

The French are becoming increasingly aware that the textile industry is one of the most polluting in the world. It now emits more greenhouse gases than international flights and maritime traffic combined. Consumers are also concerned about the manufacturing conditions of the clothes they buy and wear.

2021 was a record year for the second-hand sector. More than one in two French people have now adopted ‘second life’ clothing in their daily lives. They are aware that it is good for the planet as well as for their purchasing power.

A fair price for themselves and for the environment.

With the government, we are acting to transform our production model and decarbonize our French industry. A French industry, based on sustainability and short circuits, which consumers are already enthusiastic about. This more sustainable fashion must benefit as many people as possible.

We want to go further in the textile sector, with a new roadmap, new measures, and clear objectives. The Anti-waste law for a circular economy (Agec) has given us new tools that will allow us to accelerate and transform the sector. Today, less than one garment in 10 has a chance of being reused or recycled. With these measures, we have an ambition: by 2027, it will be one garment in two.

We are therefore planning :

– Financial bonuses to be applied from next year to transform and relocate the textile industry towards more sustainable products made from recycled products. In concrete terms, manufacturers of virtuous products will pay a lower eco-tax.

– 150 million euros will be devoted to a new fund to reduce the costs of repairing clothes and shoes, thus extending their life span.

– A new €100 million fund for re-use, to make new clothes and give new life to our clothes or shoes at a lower price. This fund will finance associations and companies that refurbish used textiles to give them a second life.

– Create an efficient textile recycling industry to produce recycled fibers without consuming new resources. The eco-organisations will finance its implementation.

Associations and companies such as Envie, Emmaus, Le Relais, and Renaissance Textile will benefit from these new measures to develop their activities.

This action plan represents an investment of one billion euros over 6 years, paid by producers on the “polluter pays” principle, compared to 150 million euros previously. This is a considerable effort, because we must all be mobilized so that the textile industry radically accelerates its shift towards the circular economy.

Let’s all be consumers!

In order to save the planet, we cannot just be satisfied with greening the sector and making it less polluting. We need to rethink our consumption patterns. We need to change our paradigm and see clothing as a sustainable investment and not as a disposable product.

To do this, we need to enable everyone to make informed consumer choices: to become a “consom’actor”. This is why the government will introduce an “eco-score” for clothing by the end of 2023. The French will have clear and simple information on the impact of the clothes offered for sale, and will thus be able to choose the most environmentally friendly products. Finally, this transformation of our model should enable the French to consume better, with clothes that will soon be more durable, eco-designed, while also promoting second life.

Sud Ouest