13 October 2021
The International Council of Tanners, the Leather and Hide Council of America and Leather Naturally have published a joint manifesto ahead of the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) that will take place in Glasgow from October 31 to November 12.
In the manifesto, which they will make public on October 25, the leather industry bodies issue a call for COP26 to recognise four key points.
It should acknowledge “the cyclical, climate-efficient nature of natural fibres and the potential these materials have for helping to reduce the climate impacts of consumer products”. COP26 should also encourage the use of natural materials wherever feasible and reduce unnecessary reliance on fossil-fuel-based alternatives.
In addition, the conference should give support to lifecycle assessment (LCA) methodologies that “accurately account for the environmental impact of fossil-fuel based materials, including end-of-life properties”.
Finally, the manifesto calls on COP26 to promote long-lasting products that can be used many times, repaired and refurbished, and last for years.
Leather fulfils all these criteria perfectly, as the nearly 70 in-depth features World Leather has published in its Leather and the Circular Economy section in the last two years make abundantly clear.
The three signatories of the manifesto have also called on leather industry organisations around the world to endorse the manifesto and have said they hope bodies representing other natural materials will add their voices too.
They asked organisations such as national leather industry organisations to communicate support of the manifesto to the COP26 delegations that their national governments will send to Glasgow, to politicians who will take part in the conference, to media outlets covering the event, to other individuals or organisations that have a voice in “the debate on a circular and responsible society”, and on social media.
They envisage an intense, industry-wide communication effort in the week building up to the start of COP26 and have said they will prepare and share material for industry organisations to use in this effort from October 25 onwards.