Company Profile: Levi Strauss and CoWe Mean Business coalition
Levi Strauss & Co. is one of the world’s largest brand-name apparel companies and a global leader in jeanswear. Its products are sold in more than 110 countries worldwide through a combination of chain retailers, department stores, online sites, and a global footprint of and a global footprint of approximately 3,000 retail stores and shop-in-shops. Levi Strauss & Co.’s reported fiscal 2018 net revenues were $5.6 billion.
- Levi Strauss & Co.’s science-based targets on climate include reducing scope 1 and 2 emissions by 90% in owned and operated facilities by 2025, and by 40% across its entire global supply chain in the same time frame.
- In addition, Levi Strauss & Co. aims to be using 100% renewable electricity in owned-and-operated facilities by 2025.
- Across its operations and energy use (scopes 1 and 2), Levi Strauss & Co. achieved 3% emissions reduction from 2016 to 2017, from 56,047 mt in 2016 to 54,588 mt in 2017.
- Working with the International Finance Corporation, Levi Strauss & Co. piloted the IFC’s Partnership for Cleaner Textiles (PaCT) program with six manufacturers in Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka and Vietnam starting in 2017. The manufacturers were able to reduce GHG emissions by an average of 19% and save more than US $1 million in operating costs collectively in participating facilities.
- Levi Strauss & Co. is now working with the IFC to expand the PaCT approach to more than 50 of its top suppliers globally.
- Levi Strauss & Co. achieved its initial 2020 target to procure 20% of total energy from renewable energy sources by 2017 by setting up green utility contracts in the EU and green-e certified Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) in the US, among other measures.
- Of Levi Strauss & Co.’s nearly 140,000 MWh total energy consumption in 2017, over 26,000 MWh was from renewable sources.
- The company is working to achieve its 100% renewable electricity target through the implementation of energy efficiency measures and onsite solar capabilities; purchasing green utility products in Europe; establishing power purchase agreements (PPAs) in the United States; and buying renewable energy certificates (RECs) globally.
- In 2020, Levi Strauss & Co. plans to install on-site solar generation at its LEED Platinum-certified distribution center in Henderson, Nevada.
Cost savings through decarbonisation
- Levi Strauss & Co. has achieved cost reductions through various emissions reduction efforts. These have included switching to LED lighting and upgrading to more energy-efficient processes and building features across in its retail locations, and retrofitting its LEED Platinum-certified distribution center in Henderson, Nevada.
- More than two-third of Levi’s® products are made with Water<Less™ techniques, which has saved 3 billion liters of water and recycled over 2 billion liters of water in product and fabric manufacturing as of 2018. The company aims to have over 80% of Levi’s® products made with these techniques by 2020.
- In China, Levi Strauss & Co. is working with the Apparel Impact Institute’s Clean by Design Program, an initiative that is helping LS&Co. to reduce the climate and water impact of fabric mill suppliers in China. Clean by Design was formerly managed by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).
- In 2009, Levi Strauss & Co. launched “A Care Tag for Our Planet” — to spread the word that small changes in the way we care for clothes can help reduce our climate change impact.
- The Levi’s® and Dockers® brands now include relevant messaging on all global product care tags encouraging consumers to “wash less, wash in cold, line dry, and donate when no longer needed.”
- Levi Strauss & Co. has publicly stated that government leadership is essential for widespread action to address climate change and to create the enabling environment for companies to accelerate the transition to a clean energy economy, saying: “We can do more, faster and cheaper with federal legislation that incentivizes utilities to work with us to capture efficiencies and invest in renewable energy.”
- In 2009, Levi Strauss & Co. became one of the founding members of Ceres policy network, Business for Innovative Climate and Energy Policy (BICEP), a coalition of businesses engaging federal, state and local policymakers to enact meaningful policies to mitigate climate change.
- In 2015, Levi Strauss & Co. was among one of the first business voices to express support for the Paris Climate Agreement. During those negotiations. CEO Chip Bergh joined the heads of several leading companies in asking world leaders to enact a strong global climate deal.
- When the U.S. government announced its intent to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement in 2017, Levi Strauss & Co. stood with thousands of businesses, states, and mayors in joining the We Are Still In movement, reaffirming continued support for climate action to meet the targets under the Paris Agreement.
- In 2017, Levi Strauss & Co. joined other businesses in the BICEP coalition to protect an existing rule that prohibits wasteful venting, flaring, and leaking of natural gas from oil and gas operations on federal lands (the Bureau of Lands Management Methane Rule).
- In 2017 Levi Strauss & Co. advocated alongside other businesses opposing a rule proposed by the US Department of Energy that sought to provide cost recovery assurances to electricity generators storing more than 90 days’ worth of fuel on site. The rule would have effectively subsidized uneconomic coal and nuclear plants, while further inhibiting the growth of a clean energy economy, in turn inhibiting the deployment of renewable energy in the US.
- In 2019, LS&Co. was one of 75 leading companies to go to Capitol Hill to advocate for necessary federal action by the U.S. Congress to mitigate the climate crisis, including placing a federal price on greenhouse gas emissions.
- Levi Strauss & Co. was the first apparel company to report global GHG emissions to The Climate Registry.
- Levi Strauss & Co. was the first apparel company and among the first companies in any industry to commit to align its science-based target with limiting global warming to 1.5oC , per the guidance of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
- In 2018, Levi Strauss & Co. was among the initial signatories of the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action, which is convened by the UN and sets a vision and collective action framework for the apparel industry to achieve net-zero emissions by 2050.
- In 2017 Levi Strauss & Co. launched a new program, the Collaboratory, through which it provides grants to small innovative companies, referred to as “Fellows”, to address social and environmental impacts of the apparel industry. The second class of Fellows specifically worked to address the issue of climate change.