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Protect the Environment

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Through ongoing innovation and strong partnerships, we are working across our value chain to reduce our impact on the climate and water and avoid waste.

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Case Study

Improving Access to Clean Water

In FY22, we joined WWF’s Noyyal-Bhavani Collective Action Program to help address industry impacts on freshwater in the southern Indian region in collaboration with WWF-India and two other corporate partners. The objective of the collective action program is to ensure that by 2030, the Noyyal and Bhavani sub-basins are healthy river ecosystems that ensure water security for people and nature. We nominated six manufacturing facilities, in the area, to identify opportunities to improve their efficiency in energy and water use, which in turn will help reduce overall impacts from manufacturing. This program aims to address shared basin challenges through:

In FY22, we joined WWF’s Noyyal-Bhavani Collective Action Program to help address industry impacts on freshwater in the southern Indian region in collaboration with WWF-India and two other corporate partners. The objective of the collective action program is to ensure that by 2030, the Noyyal and Bhavani sub-basins are healthy river ecosystems that ensure water security for people and nature. We nominated six manufacturing facilities, in the area, to identify opportunities to improve their efficiency in energy and water use, which in turn will help reduce overall impacts from manufacturing. This program aims to address shared basin challenges through:
A strong foundation of science-based actions;
Pilots to help inform policy making in the region, which is responsible for 90% of total cotton knitwear exports from India; and
Clear key performance indicators which measure the impact on the landscape.

Key achievements from the program include:

  • Completed a cross-section and Aquatic Biodiversity survey, and installed a Water Level Recorder (WLR) in Moyar for e-flow assessment, which gives an overview of the flow regime to assess if the e-flow for aquatic biodiversity is met.
  • Implemented pilots in select wetlands for community-led monitoring, water quality improvement and invasive species management by distributing water quality kits to citizen groups.
  • Completed a scoping study for 10 textile units in Tirupur and developed improvement plans for four units.
  • Completed River Health Assessments (RHAs) for three seasons in Noyyal and Moyar basins, which will facilitate the development of a river health card in the upcoming quarter.
  • Climate

    We are committed to playing our part to address the climate crisis by reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across our supply chain to a level consistent with reaching global net zero emissions and investing in credible removal of any residual emissions.

    Achieving and sustaining net zero emissions will require adoption of low- and zero-carbon practices throughout our supply chain. We have identified the strategies that will be most important to reach our 2040 target. These strategies include the electricity used in our operations, energy used by our suppliers, how we transport our goods, the raw materials in our products and the circular products and experiences we offer to customers.

    In June 2020, we set a 2030 goal to reduce our Scope 1, 2, and 3 GHG emissions by 30% against our FY20 baseline. This target was approved by the Science-Based Targets Initiative (SBTi). We plan to seek SBTi approval for our new 2030 target and our net zero target in calendar year 2022. To accompany these commitments, we published a Net Zero Commitment Statement that details how we will achieve these targets.

    New to our overall climate strategy, in 2023, we will set new goals aimed at protecting and regenerating nature in alignment with the comprehensive Science-Based Targets for Nature (SBTN) guidance to be published in late 2022.

    GOALS

    By 2040, achieve net zero from FY20 base year

    By 2030, achieve a 30% reduction in absolute Scope 1, 2 and 3 GHG, compared to a FY20 base year

    By 2025, power our owned and operated offices, distribution centers and stores with 100% renewable electricity

    By 2024, we will develop a biodiversity strategy and set goals aligned with the Science Based Targets for Nature

    Water Stewardship

    Freshwater is an essential resource for people and wildlife, and a foundation for healthy ecosystems and thriving economies. It’s also a resource that the textile and apparel industry is heavily reliant on—from growing cotton to dyeing and washing fabric.

    Our strategy covers our whole value chain, with a focus on:

    CONSERVATION

    Safeguard and preserve water resources where we operate through contextual water targets and collective action program implementation in priority geographies with high water stress.

    COTTON

    Sustainably source cotton and accelerate the adoption of regenerative farming practices.

    COMMUNITY

    Partner with organizations focused on watershed health and community WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) solutions through the Ralph Lauren Corporate Foundation.

    In FY22, we continued to collaborate with World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to advance our conservation work and set a comprehensive strategy for water stewardship and water use reductions in our value chain. Additionally, we are in the process of setting contextual water targets to better align our reduction goal with surrounding water challenges.

    GOALS

    Achieve at least a 20% reduction in total water use across our operations and value chain, compared to a FY20 baseline by 2025

    Waste Management

    Across our distribution centers, offices and stores, we work to minimize waste and avoid sending materials to incineration or landfill, including excess inventory.

    We’ve committed to integrating zero-waste principles across our business, focusing on reducing waste at its source and diverting waste from landfill through increased recycling. As we work to become a more circular business, we’re aiming to reduce excess inventory, keep materials in use for as long as possible and minimize waste generated at our facilities.

    In FY22, overall operational waste volumes returned to FY20 levels in line with the increase in business activities. We generated approximately 5,767 metric tons of waste at our distribution centers and diverted 88% of this from landfill—on track to meet our 2023 goal. In our North America-owned distribution centers, we achieved a 92% diversion rate in FY22. We also collected detailed waste data for all of our third-party operated distribution centers in Europe and Asia.

    GOALS

    Achieve 100% recyclable, reusable or sustainably sourced packaging materials by 2025

    Achieve zero waste to landfill across our distribution centers by 2023

    As we work to become a more circular business, we are integrating zero-waste principles across our operations and supply chain.

    Sustainable Packaging

    Environmentally responsible packaging is an essential part of a circular future.

    In FY22, 82% of our packaging volume met at least one of our sustainable packaging criteria. Additionally, we transitioned to a regular, standardized reporting process for our suppliers to allow us to track sustainable aspects of our packaging across brands, packaging types and regions throughout the year.

    We also help consumers play a role in the sustainable packaging process. On our e-commerce site, RalphLauren.com, our reduced packaging option gives consumers the ability to remove plastic or paper inserts, hangers, garment bags, promotional materials and paper invoices from their orders. In FY22, we continued to remove and recycle all of the polybags from reduced packaging orders, which represented 14% of all orders placed through RalphLauren.com.

    GOALS

    Achieve 100% of our packaging material being recyclable, reusable or sustainably sourced by 2025

    Chemical Management

    Chemicals play an important role in the creation and manufacturing processes of our products. We have a responsibility to ensure the chemicals used to make our products are safe for people and the environment. Our Sustainable Chemical Management Policy outlines our approach in assessing the impacts of the chemicals in our supply chain, and in partnering with our manufacturers in responsible chemical management practices. For more information, please see Chemical Management in the 2022 GC&S Report.

    GOALS

    Eliminate the use of hazardous chemicals in our supply chain by 2023

    Read our 2022 Global Citizenship &
    Sustainability Report and
    ESG Supplement