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Walmart sets green textiles goals as part of sustainability campaign

Walmart has announced the rollout of a number of green initiatives focused on improving the carbon footprint of its supply chain.

The Arkansas-based company announced the eco-friendly updates at its 2019 sustainability milestone summit. During the event, Walmart shared new sustainability goals for apparel and soft home textiles within Walmart U.S. stores. These included plans to offer reusable bags made with post-consumer recycled content at its U.S. stores beginning next month; to increase the use of recycled polyester fiber, setting a goal of using 50 percent recycled content by 2025 and sourcing 100 percent more sustainable cotton; to source apparel and home textile products exclusively from suppliers working with environmentally certified textile mills by 2022; and to reduce the discharge of priority chemicals from its textile manufacturing process. For its energy goals, Walmart said it aims to be powered by 100 percent renewable energy -- and to power 50 percent of its operations with renewable energy -- by the end of 2025. In the past year, Walmart completed contracts for 136 solar and wind projects, which Walmart said will supply the company an additional estimated 2.14 billion kilowatt hours of renewable energy annually. The 2019 summit also marked the two-year anniversary of Project Gigaton, a project launched by Walmart to work with suppliers to avoid a gigaton of emissions from global value chains by 2030. At this year's summit, Walmart Canada announced it is joining the project, making it Walmart’s third international market to join the initiative. In an effort to make it easier to enlist more suppliers, Walmart said it would publish its Project Gigaton Calculators, which are designed by Walmart and NGOs for suppliers to use in reporting progress toward the Project Gigaton goal. In February, Walmart announced an additional series of plastic waste reduction goals that seek to advance the sustainability of the retailer’s private brand packaging by making it 100 percent recyclable, reusable or industrially compostable by 2025.

By Gabriella Lacombe

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