International leather industry calls on COP26 to reduce reliance on fossil-fuels, prioritise natural materials
02 / 11 / 2021
Original content posted by: COTANCE.
COTANCE, along with 30 other international leather industry organizations, today called on the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26) to have a fresh look at natural materials. The “Leather Manifesto” asks the COP26 to recognise the cyclical, climate-efficient characteristics of natural fibres and their aptitude to reduce the climate impacts of consumer products.
“Natural fibres are part of the biogenic carbon cycle and as such are comprised of carbon that has been in the atmosphere for a millennia,” the Leather Manifesto states. “These readily available raw materials, when ethically and properly produced, are an important replacement for fossil fuels, reducing the need for its extraction and retaining more carbon in the earth. Furthermore, at the end of life, properly produced natural materials will biodegrade, limiting their impact and mitigating harmful emissions, such as microplastic pollution, often associated with synthetic materials.”
The signatories further note that leather risks being penalised because of a lack of understanding of its nature. Producers of leather substitutes, often fossil fuel-based synthetic alternatives, use this confusion to make unsubstantiated claims about their sustainability.
“Leather exists because Mankind discovered a way to transform a residue of meat production into a durable material that would otherwise rot causing harm to human health and the environment. Can we afford losing this beautiful, natural and renewable resource that has been with us since the eve of time?” said COTANCE President Manuel Rios (INPELSA, Spain).
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