A Decade of Green: China’s Top Sustainability Trends in 2020

A Decade of Green: China’s Top Sustainability Trends in 2020

China is entering a new decade of green

the list of environmental crises occurring around the world is endless and is only ever-increasing. These ecological degradations call for drastic measures from all parties starting from governmental entities, corporations, all the way down to each individual consumer themselves in order to really make an impact in saving the world that we and our future generations live in.

With the world’s largest population and fastest growing economy, it is no surprise that China is the greatest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions. China has faced public scrutiny from several international communities for years now. The country’s status as the global manufacturing powerhouse mainly results from previous trade agreements as well as multinational brands producing heavily in China.

Government: China to reduce single-use plastics by 2025

Evident in Alibaba’s Single’s Day promotion where over $1 billion of goods and packages was sold in the first minute alone, online shopping has become a major staple in Chinese consumers’ everyday lives, resulting in the avalanche of plastic waste produced. To compound the intensity of plastic consumption, food delivery apps and services have also permeated the Chinese consumer behaviors, exponentially increasing the use of disposable plastic bags, containers, utensils, and more.

In order to tackle the global plastic crisis, the National Development and Reform Commision (NDRC) has officially announced that “non-degradable plastic bags will be banned in places such as supermarkets and shopping malls in major cities, as well as in the country’s ubiquitous food delivery services”.

China will also actively promote alternative recyclable materials and establish an end-to-end system for disposing plastic products by 2025 to combat and reduce the use of plastic utensils in urban areas by 30% by 2025. This policy is huge news as it applies immense pressure on Chinese companies and carries major implications for them to hop onto the green wagon.

Corporations: Sustainable manufacturing is on the rise amongst brands in China

One way Chinese companies have been leading China’s environmental movement is through sustainable manufacturing. Sustainable manufacturing refers to the creation of products through economically sound practices and is a popular option for manufacturers that aim to capitalize on the green economy, minimize their negative environmental impacts, and reduce their consumption of energy and resources. Chinese cashmere brand, Erdos, is one of the first labels to adopt this practice and greenify all production processes, including machine manufacturing, design, supply chain, and sales channel as part of the Made in China 2025 initiative – all in aims to enforce sustainable changes and bring positive impacts to sustainability.

Moreover, Chinese retail and fashion labels have stepped up their game in eliminating carbon emissions by adopting environmentally conscious business models in leading China’s green movement. For example, Reclothing Bank, a Shanghai-based designer brand, upcycles old clothes and fabrics by giving them a new life and intriguing aesthetic.

Meanwhile, Finch adopts Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programs like creating their stylish swimwear from recycled plastic bottles, instead of raw materials and oversees the entire production process, all the way from fabric sourcing to factory manufacturing, to ensure that they stay true to their social mission and values.These Chinese brands are amongst many, following the rising consumer demands for more eco-conscious, sustainable products.