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  • Prof. Kate Fletcher

Earth Logic: new hope for Black Friday

Let this Black Friday mark the beginning of a new obsession. An obsession not with shopping, not with buying more things that we don’t need for parties that we can’t go to because of COVID. No, not this. Let this Black Friday mark a new obsession with Earth. Let it signal the start of a relentless and loving privileging of Earth systems as the focus of our activity. Without such a focus, everything else is imperilled: food production systems, healthy lives, demands for equality, economic systems, fashion…. Our new obsession must be about the quality of the relationship we have with Earth, our beautiful, life-supporting home.

The Earth Logic Fashion Action Research Plan shows us what a sector can be like that puts Earth first. It shows us how to move forward at pace. It provides both framework and clear actions that can - and are - being put into practice anywhere, specifically. Earth Logic, written by Professors Kate Fletcher and Mathilda Tham, is a radical invitation to the fashion sector, to industry leaders, to the media, to governance, to designers, to students, to citizens, to transform the fashion sector by following a new logic, one that puts the needs of Earth before the needs of industry.

Evidence increasingly suggests that despite the fashion industry’s substantial attempts to increase the resource efficiency of its operations, this is not enough to reduce the sector’s impact. This is because the majority of environmental initiatives focus on improving fashion at the level of the product. This characterises a first generation of approaches. It is important, but benefits are eaten up by ever increasing volumes and it is this aggregate growth of the fashion sector that is the source of impact. What is plain is that we need to work deeper in order to engage with fashion sustainability, we need to consider the purpose of the system. Without change here, the sector will keep growing.

Earth Logic deals directly with the purpose of the system and proposes a paradigm shift which replaces the logic that underpins the industry – economic growth logic – with a new logic: Earth Logic. It uses values to determine a context for fashion sector activity and then unfolds six ‘landscapes’ for fashion activity which include but are not limited to the market. It articulates new relationships and opportunities for fashion which begin to contribute to the places in which we live and to our ongoing thriving on Earth. This is like a turn of the kaleidoscope, enabling us to see new patterns and configurations, new possibilities, and pathways.

This Black Friday, mark the day with a new obsession: care for Earth


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