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Canada’s ALDO Group continues to step up climate action

Canadian fashion retailer ALDO Group has renewed its climate-neutral certification for the fourth...

The ALDO Group, fashion, retail, shoes, footwear, GHG emissions, Paris Agreement, carbon footprint, climate action

Canadian company, the ALDO Group, is committing to climate action. (Courtesy The ALDO Group)

Canadian fashion retailer ALDO Group has renewed its climate-neutral certification for the fourth consecutive year and continues to take strides toward reducing its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions.

“Inspired by the COP21 in Paris six years ago, we made a decision in 2018 to become the first climate-neutral fashion footwear company,” said David Bensadoun, CEO of the ALDO Group, in a release.

The footwear and accessories company participated in the international COP26 climate change conference and has also joined We Mean Business, an international coalition of more than 600 corporations with the goal of accelerating climate action to halve emissions by 2030. Participants represent a variety of sectors including energy, transportation, fashion and construction.

“We hope that our participation will contribute in a small way to a very big global challenge.”

Coalition hots pavilion at COP26

The coalition hosted the Business Pavilion for Climate Leadership at COP26 in Glasglow, Scotland. The goal of the pavilion was to bring together businesses and civil society organizations in an effort to create an inclusive net-zero economy in line with an international plan to limit global warming to no more than 1.5°C.

During the conference, Jonathan Frankel, senior vice-president of APS at the ALDO Group, joined the Lead by Example – Harnessing Innovation Towards a Carbon Neutral Fashion & Textile Industry panel discussing how the fashion industry can reduce its environmental footprint and how collaboration between manufacturers, designers and consumers is crucial to reaching carbon neutrality.

“The long-term sustainability of the global fashion industry requires systemic change that goes beyond the capabilities of any one company,” said Frankel. “We cannot fight this problem alone. We strongly believe in collaboration, and that is why we wanted to take part in this unifying event.”

Paul Polman, business leader and author of Net Positive: How Courageous Companies Thrive By Giving More Than They Take, added in a release there has been “unprecedented collaboration across industries, collective courage from leading companies and a shared vision of a global economy that is both green and just.

“The We Mean Business Coalition is proof that the private sector is shifting and real momentum is growing for faster, bolder action on climate.”

The fashion industry’s effect on global warming

Between material sourcing, supply chains, washing and waste, the fashion industry contributes 8–10 per cent of global carbon emissions. Since this information has come to light, more and more major fashion brands are increasing efforts to become carbon-neutral.

Just as the term “net-zero” had industry experts initially perplexed, the phrase “climate neutral” can be equally confusing. Climate neutral refers to reducing all GHGs to zero, plus eliminating other negative environmental impacts an organization may cause.

The ALDO Group has increased its climate action over the past few years. The organization is also a member of associations promoting partnerships for industry-wide action, such as the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC), the Fashion Pact and the United Nations Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action (UNFCCC).

Steps the shoe retailer is taking

ALDO has taken several steps to reduce its carbon footprint. During 2020 (and amid the global pandemic), the corporation says it reduced its operational carbon emissions by 74 per cent compared to 2013. In 2019, the ALDO Group joined the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTi) to align its GHG reduction targets with climate science.

The company continues to work toward further reducing its net emissions — and compensating for emissions it cannot avoid — through forest conservation and clean energy projects. ALDO Group also earned climate neutral company certification from sustainable solutions consultancy, South Pole Group, for the fourth year in a row.

“It’s very exciting to see the ALDO Group continuing to make progress on climate action,” sad Renat Heuberger, CEO and co-founder of South Pole. “The company has demonstrated industry leadership and we congratulate them on their commitments and ever-increasing ambition.”

ALDO also has initiatives in the areas of waste management and impact on local communities, including partnering with groups to reduce their environmental footprints and promoting diversity, equity and inclusion.

The company continues to incorporate innovative and lower-impact materials in its products, including recycled fabrics such as polyester, and works with suppliers to decarbonize the supply chain.

About the ALDO Group

The ALDO Group is an international creator and operator of footwear and accessory brands, present in more than 100 countries worldwide. The organization operates under two signature brands — ALDO and Call It Spring — as well as a multi-brand retail concept called GLOBO.

Headquartered in Montreal, The ALDO Group also has offices in Europe and Asia.

As of 2019, 54 per cent of the company’s directors are women and 100 per cent of its tier-one sourcing partners are required to use the Higg Index Facilities Environment module.

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