The fashion industry depends on and consumes a lot of water. From the cotton fields and textile factories to the washer at home, water is part of the whole lifecycle of a garment.
The fashion industry is highly dependent and risks having a negative impact on the access to clean water. In many communities connected to Lindex’s supply chain, the local water resources are becoming increasingly stressed because of higher demands as well as pollution of the available water. The consequences of water scarcity are especially significant for women as they are the ones responsible for the household and collecting water for their families which sometimes can take many hours per day. They are also vulnerable to infections at giving birth and during menstruation. Both of these factors hold women back from developing and being able to fulfil their potential.
Being a water responsible company is one of the core aims in our sustainability promise – to make a difference for future generations. We want to be water efficient throughout the whole value chain, reduce the risk of water scarcity in areas connected to our operations and together with business partners provide access to water and sanitation in factories and nearby communities.
There are two key aspects of water impact; the amount of water used and how it’s being used. It’s equally important to use less water and use it right, in every way we can. Our largest impact is in the materials and production processes used for our products.
Using water right revolves around the choice of chemicals as well as equipment and processes used to clean the water before it is released. It’s about making sure that the production doesn’t lead to harmful substances being released into nature, polluting water resources and causing irreversible damage to the environment.
Read more about chemicals
On a product level, we can reduce our water impact by choosing more sustainable materials. For example, Better Cotton and organic cotton is produced with more sustainable cultivation methods where using less water is one part. But above all, by replacing some of the cotton with recycled cotton, thousands of litres of water can be saved.Read more about materials
We can also reduce our water impact by using more sustainable processes for washing, printing, dyeing and finishing in the production. Our Better Denim assortment is one of our front runners when it comes to more sustainable processes.Read more about Better Denim
Besides working on a product level with specific processes, we also work with water management at factory level. We score our suppliers on their water consumption and waste water production. We have an environmental code that sets requirements for our suppliers regarding water treatment, handling of chemicals, waste treatment and emissions that our wet process suppliers have to undertake.
To raise awareness and educate our suppliers on responsible water management and cleaner production, we have worked with collaborative projects such as PaCT (Partnership for Cleaner Textile) and STWI (Sweden Textile Water Initiative). These projects resulted in more sustainable water management systems in the factories and major improvements such as savings of millions of litres of water.