Over the last 3 decades, numerous Mediterranean countries have emerged as textile and garment producers and exporters. Nowadays, the garment lifecycle closely links the regions of the Mediterranean Sea Basin, where textiles are produced, clothing manufactured and consumed and then disposed of or recycled.
The clothing industry has become strategic to the process of economic development of the area but serious concerns have been raised in terms of social and environmental side effects. It is one of the planet’s biggest polluters; the current system creates more greenhouse gas emissions than international flights and maritime shipping combined. The issue is doomed to get worse: global clothing production has doubled in the past 15 years and according to current forecasts, it will increase by another 63% by 2030.
Despite the priority given to sustainable consumption and production (SCP) in the policy agenda of the Mediterranean, various market and social challenges continue to hinder the shift towards more sustainable market patterns and to unlock economic opportunities along the value chain locally and nationally.
In light of these challenges and the opportunities a transition to SCP offers, the Sustainable Textile Action for Networking and Development of circular economy business ventures in the Mediterranean (STAND Up!) was created.
According to STAND Up! partners, the solution lies in innovative entrepreneurialism, start-ups and recently established enterprises that have a pivotal role in the sector’s transition to SCP and environmentally and socially responsible circular model.