Exploring life cycle sustainability in the fashion industry. A case study on the impacts in the life cycle garments and the application of Life Cycle Assessment in a company

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The fashion industry is a multinational business with a growing impact on both the environment and societies worldwide. Many retails and brands, under which WE Fashion, are working to improve their share of the issues but with production mainly taking place on the other side of the world this is not easy. WE Fashion wants to learn more about its environmental impact through a Life Cycle Assessment from cradle to grave of two of its products. The goal of the research has been to find out where in the life cycle of a t-shirt and jeans the biggest environmental impacts can be identified, in order to help in anticipating the best next step in WE Fashion’s CSR strategy and looking at the usability of LCA for other products in the future. What stands out most in the results is that the fibre production phase is linked to several impact categories. Overall, life cycle assessment is limited in public use for companies and a more audit like system would be more suitable to measure life cycle environmental impact for WE Fashion’s products compared to LCA.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen