Bangladesh pollution clean-up: Solidaridad, Dutch government and industrial sector sign agreement

Large companies in the garment and textile industry will join forces with non-governmental organization Solidaridad and International Finance Corporation (IFC), to improve the sustainability of the sector in Bangladesh. Companies like H&M, WE and Esprit signed a memorandum of understanding with the Dutch Minister for Development Cooperation . They are committed to reduce the use of water and pollution in the sector.

The initiative stems from a project of Solidaridad and IFC, a division of the World Bank. The industry strives to produce less water, energy and chemicals, and invest in new technologies to reach these goals. The entire sector, from laundry to dye will benefit from this initiative.

In Bangladesh 3.5 million people work in the garment and textile sector, which is responsible for 79 percent of exports. The industry has many environmental effects. It produces 56 million tons of waste water and pollution which causes disease and a decline of fish stock.

The textile companies plans to tackle these problems together. Marieke Weerdesteijn of Solidaridad, says: “It is very important that these prominent fashion brands and the local industry expressed the need of better and cleaner production in the textile sector in Bangladesh. Only if we team up, we can make a difference.”