- Climate change activist Greta Thunberg is Vogue Scandinavia’s first ever cover star.
- The 18-year-old Swede called out fast fashion and greenwashing in her interview.
- Thunberg shared frustration with celebrities who talk about climate change but use private jets.
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Greta Thunberg used her appearance on the cover of the debut issue of Vogue Scandinavia to call out the fashion industry.
The 18-year-old climate activist, who inspired the largest global climate-change protest in 2019, discussed the practices of greenwashing and fast fashion. According to the UN, the industry accounts for 8-10% of global carbon emissions and releases half a million tons of synthetic microfibers into the ocean annually.
In her interview with Vogue Scandinavia, Thunberg spoke directly to consumers buying from brands who quickly design and market styles to be cheaply available for consumers.
“If you are buying fast fashion then you are contributing to that industry and encouraging them to expand and encouraging them to continue their harmful process,” she said.
Thunberg went on to caveat her stance, saying: “Of course I understand that for some people fashion is a big part of how they want to express themselves and their identity.”
However, when sharing an Instagram post of her Vogue cover on Monday, Thunberg clarified her steadfast position.
“The fashion industry is a huge contributor to the climate and ecological emergency, not to mention its impact on the countless workers and communities who are being exploited around the world in order for some to enjoy fast fashion that many treat as disposables,” she captioned the post.
“Many are making it look as if the fashion industry are starting to take responsibility, by spending fantasy amounts on campaigns where they portray themselves as ‘sustainable,’ ‘ethical,’ ‘green,’ ‘climate neutral’ and ‘fair,'” Thunberg added. “But let’s be clear: This is almost never anything but pure greenwashing. You cannot mass produce fashion or consume ‘sustainably’ as the world is shaped today.”
Later in her interview with Vogue, she turned the attention to the hypocrisy of celebrities and politicians who publicly stand with the climate change movement but regularly use private jets to travel.
“Of course I’m not saying that celebrities shouldn’t fly in private jets, as I make a point of never ever telling anyone what to do – but we need to understand that by doing so we may lose some people who won’t believe in what we are saying,” Thunberg said.