Country Road Backs Climate Action & Announces $1.5 Million Climate Fund

Country Road Backs Climate Action & Announces $1.5 Million Climate Fund
B&T Magazine
Edited by B&T Magazine



Australian brand Country Road has announced the Country Road Climate Fund launch, investing $1.5 million in grant funding to projects driving climate solutions in the Australian fashion industry over the next three years.

The fund aims to help accelerate and incubate projects, programs, initiatives or products across the Australian fashion industry that need funding to execute their solutions. The annual grants program will allocate up to $500,000 in the first year.

The latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report highlights, without immediate change, we are about to miss the opportunity to “secure a liveable and sustainable future for all,”

While there are many existing and innovative climate fashion solutions, many of these solutions lack the finance to be developed or deployed across the fashion industry.

The Country Road Climate Fund (Climate Fund) aims to bridge this financing gap by investing in, incubating, and accelerating climate solutions in the Australian fashion industry.

Elle Roseby, managing director of Country Road, said, “The fashion industry has a key role to play in addressing climate change, and shaping a positive future.

“Country Road is on its own journey to be a world-leading responsible lifestyle retailer. We have a science-based climate target, with a goal to reach net zero by 2040, and by 2030 we aim to have all our Australian and New Zealand stores, as well as our head office and distribution centre, supporting renewable energy.

“The Climate Fund was created as part of our responsible business journey, which strives to drive positive change across climate, nature, and community within its own operations, and also through building positive outcomes in our value chain and beyond.”

Renowned sustainability leader Dr Helen Crowley and managing director at Pollination, is a project advisor on the Climate Fund and part of the assessment committee. The committee believes this fund will help propel the Australian fashion industry further into its sustainability journey.

She said: ““What makes the Climate Fund so exciting is the recognition of the Australian fashion sector’s impact on climate change. It requires pursuing and supporting multiple approaches simultaneously. This is exactly what Country Road is doing with its new fund that focuses on protecting and restoring biodiversity, supporting Indigenous Peoples and innovating around business models and products.”

Country Road’s primary mandate is to invest in projects with a positive climate impact, directly and indirectly reducing greenhouse gas emissions. These include projects that improve energy efficiency in the production of textiles or projects that provide consumers with accurate data on the emissions intensity of different fashion items, encouraging more sustainable fashion choices.

The Climate Fund acknowledges climate outcomes can be achieved through nature-based solutions, the circular economy, innovative solutions or First Nations-led practices.

Recognising this, the fund is also targeting projects which align with one or more of these sub-themes: biodiversity conservation to protect and restore natural habitats, the circular economy to reimage the textile lifecycle, unique and disruptive technologies shifting the face of fashion and projects or partnerships led by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organisations.

The Climate Fund’s project advisor, Yatu Widders-Hunt, a proud descendant of the Dunghutti and Anaiwan Peoples from north-western New South Wales and the General Manager of Indigenous social change agency, Cox Inall Ridgeway, is also pleased with the Climate Fund’s focus on First Nations-led innovations.

“I am so proud to see this industry-leading initiative, which truly reflects the values of Country Road. What I particularly love is the recognition and respect for the ongoing custodianship of Country from First Nations peoples across Australia. Initiatives like this genuinely support community leadership, foster partnerships and invite innovation and creative thinking.”

The application deadline is Thursday, 1 December, with grant recipients announced in April 2023.




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