Bloomberg/ Robert Williams/ May 7, 2019

All the recycled water-bottle sneakers, organic cotton tote bags, and mushroom-leather belts on retailers’ shelves last season weren’t enough to turn back the dial on the fashion industry’s environmental footprint.

The industry’s progress on improving its environmental and social impact isn’t moving fast enough to counteract its rapid growth, according to a report by consultancy BCG and sustainable fashion groups. Progress at making and implementing commitments like reducing carbon emissions and water use, boosting the use of sustainable materials, and paying fairer wages was slower in 2018 than in the previous year, the report found.

The worldwide apparel and footwear market’s expected growth, pegged at around 5 percent a year through 2030 by Euromonitor analysts, risks “exerting an unprecedented strain on planetary resources” by raising annual production of fashion to more than 100 million tons, the report said.

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