textiles recyclingApparel company H&M has released its sustainability report, outlining several ambitious goals, including nearly quadrupling the amount of recycled or otherwise sustainably sourced material it uses.

The report also covers the Sweden-based clothing giant’s actions over the past year to implement environmentally friendly practices.

The global company, which posted more than $21 billion in 2016 sales, notes a key goal is to move toward a circular model, relying on renewable sources for its raw materials. The circular goal includes a pledge to use 100 percent recycled or “other sustainably sourced” materials by 2030. In 2016, 26 percent of the company’s total materials were either recycled or sustainably sourced, according to the report.

Meeting its ambitious goals will mean increasing both recyclability and recovery of its products, the company wrote. To increase the amount of its own products that are recovered, H&M aims to include recovery infrastructure at all of its stores. Last year 71 percent of its locations had textile recycling systems, up from 61 percent the year prior.

In 2016 the company also developed incentives for customers who recycle their clothing through store programs.

From 2013 to 2016, H&M collected nearly 43,000 tons of textiles, including more than 17,500 tons in 2016 alone. The company has a goal of collecting at least 27,500 tons of textiles every year by 2020.

H&M also describes itself as the second largest user of recycled polyester in the world, and it says it used recycled polyester “equivalent to more than 180 million PET bottles” last year.


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