Reducing Our Carbon Footprint
The apparel industry is responsible for around 10% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Our carbon reduction strategy will address GHG emissions across our operations and our supply chain with a focus on increasing efficiencies, committing to industry collaborations, and investing in the transition to renewable energy.
In FY19, we continued to offset 10% of our North American electricity emissions by purchasing renewable energy certificates (RECs) through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Green Power Partnership. In Europe, we offset 31% of the energy used by Ralph Lauren stores by purchasing RECs certified by Guarantee of Origins.
By 2020, we intend to set a renewable energy goal and join RE100, strengthening our global renewable energy sourcing strategy.
We recognize that reducing our water use will take innovation and collaboration. We are working to partner with leading experts, NGOs, and multi-stakeholder groups to inform the future of our water strategy. Our focus will be on supply chain engagement, from mills to raw materials, and using water-stress assessment methods to prioritize our stewardship and conservation efforts.
The waste generated by the apparel industry is on the rise with more garments being produced, packaged, and sold than ever before. We are eliminating waste at our owned facilities, including distribution centers and stores, as well as across our product lifecycle.
In FY19, we launched an eco-friendly packaging option for all orders made through RalphLauren.com. Customers who choose this option will help us reduce the amount of packaging material used.
We also made global progress to improve retail packaging. In Japan, we changed our paper shopping bags from 0% recycled content to 100 %. As of FY19, our global branded retail packaging was made from 79% recycled content.
In FY19, we began eliminating hangers from flat-packed items being shipped from global factories to our distribution centers, and we reduced the number of hangers in our North American deliveries. We also source recycled content poly bags to reduce our use of virgin plastic.