24 November 2021
A new mapping project will be the first to thoroughly evaluate the leather industry and its impacts on deforestation. Last week, leaders and activists from around the world met at COP 26, adding momentum to the urgent need for the global community to end deforestation and advance more sustainable outcomes for people and the planet. The project, a collaboration between National Wildlife Federation, World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Leather Working Group (LWG) and the Gibbs Land Use and Environment Lab (GLUE) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW), will tackle deforestation and its links to leather supply chains.
The group is united in their goal to support the leather industry to achieve deforestation-free and conversion-free (DCF) supply chains, by providing support for companies to shift to DCF leather supply chains through strengthening and building on existing commitments. The collaboration will also provide assistance for companies to engage their supply chain partners to foster a shared vision, including making time-bound commitments aligned with the Accountability Framework initiative (AFi), and following through with tangible implementation.
Simon Hall, Director of the Tropical Forests and Agriculture Program at the National Wildlife Federation, emphasized the importance of this work and highlighted the need for collective action throughout the value chain, saying:
“We are facing a climate crisis on top of a biodiversity crisis and deforestation is at the center of both. Implementing deforestation-free production and sourcing practices is a critical part of the solution and it will take collective action from companies up and down the value chain to achieve this goal. We are very excited to collaborate on this project and look forward to continuing to support companies who want to step up and demonstrate leadership on these critical issues.”
To read the rest of this report from LWG, click on Leather Supply Chain Mapping