The RealReal commits to going carbon neutral by 2021
In response to the CEO Carbon Neutral Challenge issued by Gucci CEO Marco Bizzarri on Tuesday, digital-first luxury consignment marketplace The RealReal has announced that it is accelerating its sustainability plans and aims to be fully carbon neutral by 2021.
In order to meet this new target, the San Francisco-based company has brought in third-party experts from Shift Advantage, a sustainability consultancy headquartered in Portland, Oregon.
This team is currently analysing The RealReal’s greenhouse gas emissions, collecting data that the company will then use to implement targeted reductions, as well as measures to offset unavoidable emissions.
Following the methodologies of the World Resources Institute and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, Shift Advantage’s footprint analysis of The RealReal’s operations focuses on three main scopes. The first of these concerns emissions generated directly by The RealReal, through the vehicles in its transportation fleet, for example.
The other two focus on emissions that the company generates indirectly, firstly through its electricity purchases, and then through its business activities, such as shipping.
The RealReal already signed onto the UN's Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action (UNFCCC) earlier this year, committing to a 30% reduction in its greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. However, the company’s management now feels that more drastic action is needed, citing worrying recent events such as this year’s Amazon wildfires.
“Marco Bizzarri’s challenge to execute more radical and immediate change inspired us to respond with greater urgency and turn up the dial on the commitment we made with [the UNFCCC],” said The RealReal CEO Julie Wainwright in a release. “Between the conversations had at this year’s Copenhagen Fashion Summit to the important work of activists like Greta Thunberg, it’s clear that we must do more and do it faster.”
The challenge thrown down by Bizzarri on Tuesday urges top-level executives to take immediate action against climate change at their businesses, adopting an “avoid, reduce and restore” approach to tackle greenhouse gas emissions.
Seemingly issued in reaction to the growing list of companies in the fashion industry committing to long-term sustainability goals, the Gucci CEO’s call to arms stresses the pressing nature of the climate crisis, insisting that companies must take full responsibility for all greenhouse gas emissions associated with their business and implement measures to reduce them over the next few years.
Having gone public this summer, The RealReal reported revenues of $80.5 million in the third quarter ended September 30, 2019, an impressive 55% increase year over year. The company’s net loss for the quarter totaled $25.3 million.
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