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Joining UN Climate Charter, The RealReal Strengthens Sustainability Stance

Demonstrating its commitment to sustainability, The RealReal announced on Earth Day that it’s joining the UN Climate Change’s Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action, the first resale enterprise to take this step. CEO Julie Wainwright described the move as advancing the secondhand luxury business’s mission to serve as “an agent for change on a global level.”

The RealReal operates as a consignment platform online and in nine stores where sellers can earn income on their well-maintained high-end goods. It has long touted the sustainability of the resale model versus dumping unwanted items onto Goodwill and thrift enterprises, many of which offload tons of clothing, shoes, bags and other excess onto landfills anyway.

Since day one, “The RealReal has been an advocate for reducing fashion’s footprint,” Wainwright said in a statement, adding that the company already is involved with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s CE100 USA, a circular economy initiative. “We’re excited to be a voice for the circular economy in actionable conversations about reducing fashion’s impact.”

Members of this UN charter, which include Kering, Levi’s and Stella McCartney, focus on managing their carbon footprint and finding ways to reduce it while encouraging others to do the same. “We make it easy for consumers to shift their consumption behaviors to a more sustainable model, and we challenge ourselves as a company to find new ways to become increasingly sustainable,” Wainwright explained. “As part of joining the Charter, we’re working toward reducing our carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030.”