Our days are monitored by apps or simple settings on our phones, telling us how many hours we spend scrolling through Instagram, how many steps we have taken and even the altitude difference, even if we live in the flatter Po Valley. There are apps that help monitor the quality of life and air where we live, but is there a simple system that clearly translates what we can do in our own small way when it comes to environmental issues, especially if they are linked to habits or passions we don’t want to give up, such as fashion?
A system has recently been launched that tells us how to lower the environmental cost of our clothes, by tracking data processed by an algorithm that “talks” to us through an application that provides us with real-time information on the clothes we wear, ensuring that we have obtained the maximum from the garments in terms of environmental protection.
Thanks to the Lombardy Region’s “Fashion Tech” call for tenders, aimed at supporting innovation in the fashion sector from design to distribution, P.E.A.S. (Product Environmental Accountability System) was able to take shape, imagining a traceability and gamification system that would provide information to encourage prolonged use of the garments.
Based on the idea of Matteo Ward of the WRÅD brand and together with a team that also involved the Milan Politecnico, we began to break down the eight phases of the production cycle, starting with the cotton and ending with dyeing and packaging, monitoring 13 environmental parameters and the garment’s impact on them. The next step was to verify the data through a blockchain, giving a digital identity to the individual garment made ad hoc, through a label or a code. This system is not a novelty, what is new is the intuition not to collect the data transmitted by the fabric in a private database, but to put them in a public, unmodifiable and certified one.
For this system, called Otichain and designed to be less energy-intensive and therefore more sustainable, a currency (Oti) has been created with which fast and non-polluting transactions can be carried out.
The last phase of the P.E.A.S. project involved the creation of a pilot app, which companies can customise by providing the services they prefer, to “connect clothes to people and people to the planet”, as Matteo Ward said during the project presentation conference.
A way to keep track of one’s clothes, their life and improvements for the environment after each use. It is a solution that could open up considerable possibilities for fast fashion, a sector that by nature is prone to continuous eruptions of goods that end up unsold, irreparably polluting the environment.