Every June 17th the United Nations celebrates the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought to support activities that raise awareness of this important issue, presenting the magnitude of the problem and necessary measures to prevent its damages. Among the most alarming data is that droughts will affect three quarters of the world’s population by 2050 and the textile sector is one of the biggest culprits of water waste worldwide. At CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster we are committed to the transition to a more environmentally responsible textile industry, aware of its negative impact and necessary transformation.
According to the United Nations, 55 million people globally today are affected by droughts and 2.3 billion people suffer from water stress. In the textile sector, one of the biggest challenges is posed by textile crops, especially cotton, which accounts for 2.6% of global water use. The biggest man-made environmental disaster has been caused by the textile and cotton industry in the Aral Sea (between Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan), which in less than 50 years went from 68,000 km2 to less than 7,000 km2. That is why CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster promotes an ecological, circular and regenerative fashion and textile industry.
To contribute to the reduction of desertification, water saving and water reuse are key measures. The fashion and textile industry consumes 93,000 cubic metres of water per year, which is equivalent to the consumption of 5 billion people. In our project we are aware of the problem and consider imperative to optimise the use of this vital resource through innovative closed-loop systems or treatment plants.
Another important problem of the textile and fashion industry is the 20% of drinking water pollution in the world, generated by the manufacture of clothing. In Africa, water has practically become a bleach and dumping ground for toxic metals, dyes and substances harmful to the ecosystem. The current production model of industry is unsustainable and unhealthy, so the emphasis must be on new processes that align with nature.
This year, under the motto “Rising up from drought together” at CirCoAX by CircularInnoBooster we reflect on the measures that need to be taken to fight desertification from the fashion and textile sector. In our acceleration programme we will continue to promote the change of paradigm, the care of water quality and the research of closed circuits so that the resource is active.
COSME is the programme for the Competitiveness of Enterprises and Small and Medium-sized Enterprises by the European Commission’s Executive Agency for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME).
This programme assists SMEs to develop their business models, to obtain funds and to internationalise. This scheme also supports public administrations to enhance the entrepreneurial environment and to facilitate the economic growth of the EU. During the funding period of 2014-2020, this programme allocated €2.3 billion to support SMEs.
Istituto Europeo di Design is an academic institution working in education, training, and the research of fashion, design, visual communication, and management. IED has offices in Spain (Madrid and Barcelona), Italy (Milan, Rome and five other cities) and Brazil (São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro). IED works in several EU and COSME countries through collaborations and arrangements with institutions, business support organisations, teachers, experts, and mentors. IED has an extensive network of connections in the fashion and textile sector (F&T).
Finnova es una fundación que trabaja para la promoción y el desarrollo de la innovación y el espíritu empresarial a nivel de la UE. Con sede en Bruselas, opera a través de colaboraciones y asociaciones en todos los países de la Unión Europea. La experiencia de Finnova liderando actividades de comunicación y difusión de proyectos europeos se combina con una sólida experiencia probada en la creación de empresas y programas de apoyo empresarial, como aceleradoras, incubadoras y selección y adjudicación de eventos ceremoniales.
Texfor is a leading textile association in Spain with roughly 400 members. Founded in 2010 and based in Catalonia, Texfor brings together enterprises from the textile value chain, i.e. from weaving to fabrics as well as accessories, textile finishing, printing, and dyeing for the dressmaking industry, textiles for households and technical and industrial applications. Texfor has an extensive expertise as it has worked in relevant expert committees at an EU level: university and professional training, developing financial capacities, cross-cutting collaboration, fostering RDI, specialised services, and leadership in sustainability focused on the circular economy.
Circulab is a laboratory and design studio specialising in developing transformation methods, tools and programmes to help enterprises adopt circular and sustainable business models. Circulab has designed a number of tools to implement a circular business model in enterprises. It works in 23 countries – 9 out of them in the EU – and it supports projects via 60 independent entrepreneurial consultants. It applies circular methodologies and tools.
About The Circular Project co-designed with HumanNation
TCP (The Circular Project) favours and promotes a circular and sustainable fashion in different areas, offering the fashion industry a communication strategy based on a cross-cutting and systemic approach of the circular economy. TCP combines social, ethical, environmental and economic aspects, and has a strong presence and connections in the sustainable fashion world.
TCP has promoted the Circular Sustainable Fashion Week Madrid, a one-of-a-kind event, and also serves as HQ for the Spanish Association for the Sustainability, Innovation and Circularity in the Fashion Industry. TCP is also ambassador of Sannas (Triple Bottom Line Business Association) and has collaborated in a wide array of Spanish, European, and Latin American institutions and enterprises.
The Circular Project works with Human Nation to co-design and develop CirCoAX. HumanNation is a consultancy enterprise specialising in the development of transformative and disruptive ecosystems of innovation and companies for the ‘new economy’. It is based on the fourth economic sector, the systemic thinking, and co-creation. It raises awareness in organisations and ecosystems to respect the planetary boundaries and the social fabric, creating resilient local economies with a global perspective.