Levi Strauss & Co. is adding the support of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) to help reach part of its ambitious 2025 climate goals.
The company announced Friday that it has signed a $2.3 million cooperation agreement with the International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, aimed to help reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of 42 designated LS&Co. suppliers and mills. LS&Co.’s goal is to achieve a 40 percent reduction in GHG emissions across its entire global supply chain by 2025.
The IFC is an international financial institution that offers investment, advisory and asset-management services to encourage private-sector advancement in less developed countries. Through the agreement, IFC will assist suppliers in identifying and implementing appropriate renewable energy and water saving interventions across 10 countries, including Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, India, Mexico, Lesotho, Colombia, Turkey, Egypt and Vietnam.
“Across the corporate world, people are waking up to the fact that better sustainability performance drives better business performance,” said Michael Kobori, LS&Co. vice president of sustainability. “Vendors in resource-stressed countries have shown the ability to innovate based on conditions on the ground, but in some cases, they need some assistance to make it work. This program provides that assistance, which benefits not just those companies, but also people living in those communities, as well as LS&Co.”
The agreement, LS&Co. said, follows a successful 2017 pilot cooperation between the two organizations that helped six LS&Co. suppliers in four countries reduce their emissions by 20 percent and decreased their operating costs by more than $1 million, collectively.
“We hope this program can also benefit others in the apparel industry and help reduce our collective footprint,” said Liz O’Neill, LS&Co. executive vice president, global product and supply chain.
LS&Co. announced its 2025 environmental goals last year. In addition to reducing GHG emissions in its supply chain, the company has committed to achieving a 90 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions in its owned-and-operated facilities and 100 percent renewable energy in its owned-and-operated facilities.