The European textile and clothing industry (T&C industry) represents more than 160,000 companies, generating a turnover of around €160 billion per year, and employing 1.5 million people. The industry covers a broad textile supply chain, from fibers to yarn to fabrics, through to finished textiles and clothing. It manufactures products which are necessary, beautiful, protecting, energy saving, warming, lifesaving and much more.
The textile industry recognizes that the protection of the climate is one of the most important challenges and tasks of mankind in our times. Over the past 20 years the European textile industry has reduced its fossil fuel-based energy intensity by more than 60%. The European Apparel and Textile Confederation (Euratex), Brussels/Belgium, has published a position paper on EU climate and energy policy, defining 10 steps towards climate neutrality
Key requirements, among other things, include: a safe supply of sufficient green energy (electricity and gas) at internationally competitive prices; competitive prices for green energy must be granted at European or national levels until a global level playing field in climate protection exists; and EU-policy should support solutions, e.g. through targeted subsidies (for hydrogen, energy grids, R&D, technology roadmap studies etc.).
This transformation needs to be considered in a broader global environment in which the European Textile industry operates and that is characterized by a fierce competition. Therefore, solutions have to be found which take into account the international competitiveness of the industry and prevent carbon leakage.