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Inside the Raise The Green Bar Sustainability Summit 2021 Presented by Good Housekeeping, MADE SAFE & Hass

The fifth annual sustainability summit, presented by Good Housekeeping, MADE SAFE & Hass, delved into the current state of the environment and how its deteriorating state affects us in every day life, discussed issues of greenwashing in the beauty and fashion spheres, and how "one green thing" can and does add up to enact change in a struggling society.

good housekeeping and made safe raise the green bar sustainability summit 2021 logo with speaker headshots
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Here at Good Housekeeping, our mission, among many things, is about giving our readers engaging and exciting content to help you live happy and healthy lives. And part of that means advocating for greener purchasing practices, healthier day-to-day habits that eliminate excess waste, and ultimately, information on leading more eco-friendly sustainable lives, not just for ourselves, but for our future generations.

That's why the annual Raise The Green Bar Sustainability Summit is one of our favorite days of the year, because we get to have product experts, analysts, editors and more share everything to know about the current state of sustainability, the urgent yet still salvable changing climate environment, and how you can practice a more sustainable life in all areas of your life.

This year's fifth annual and second virtual Raise The Green Bar Sustainability Summit 2021, presented by Good Housekeeping, MADE SAFE, and Hass, was our best one yet. On November 10th, apparel experts, beauty company moguls, scientists, doctors, editors, foodies and more discussed what the current state of the world means right now, how "one green thing" can and does add up to enact change is a struggling society, creating more sustainable agriculture practices betters our food systems for ourselves and for our future generations, new programs like beauty product recycling programs being introduced to give more options to the consumer who wants to be more environmentally conscious, and so much more.

Stream the entire four-plus hour summit at our event site, or check out individual fireside chats and panels in the highlighted recap below. PLUS, check out which products topped the testing charts for this year's Good Housekeeping 2021 Sustainable Innovation Awards here.

WATCH THE ENTIRE SUMMIT HERE!


Amy Ziff, Founder & Executive Director for MADE SAFE & Nontoxic Certified, kicked off the Raise The Green Bar 2021 Sustainability Summit with a warm welcome, specifically thanking our sponsor Hass for joining the MADE SAFE and Good Housekeeping teams to helping put on this expert-led deep dive into all things eco-friendly and sustainable. She quickly threw it on over to Bill McKibben, author, environmentalist, and journalist, who enthusiastically led our "Keynote Kickoff."

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American environmentalist, author, and journalist Bill McKibben discussed just how important it is to be talking right now about the current issues affecting our eco-systems and environments because it is more dire than ever. As he notes, it's always been key to have these conversations, but now more so than ever because soon, no matter what we as individuals do to negate the damage of everyday use of non-recyclable products, packaging, and overuse of non-sustainable materials, temperatures will continue to rise, water levels will continue to rise, and the overall safety of our environment will reach a dangerous point of no return. McKibben starts off our series of panels with these serious keynote to lay the groundwork for the rest of the summit, and truly show just how important everything our summit full of experts, editors, engineers and more share with us, is.

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In this fireside, Good Housekeeping's Editor in Chief Jane Francisco chatted with Dr. Katharine Hayhoe, Chief Scientist at the Nature Conservancy and a Professor of Public Policy and Public Law about the goals countries are setting, both for themselves and internationally, to cut down on carbon emissions, and contribute less pollution that interferes with the climate system. Hayhoe, who was at the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Glasgow where much of this global conversation was taking place when she spoke live with Jane, delved into the specifics of the many climate issues that much of the public often can be overwhelmed by, like the use of fossil fuels like coal, their effects on the current environment, and what the future needs to look like to allow the healing of the environment to begin, in addition to so much more!

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As an industry that can be known for using a lot of plastic and packaging, beauty has always been an area where sustainability efforts are always being looked into. In our Circular Beauty for Conscious Consumption Panel, Beauty Director April Franzino discussed the changing beauty landscape and many companies efforts to be more green, the need for companies to lead by example in being more green with beauty products, so as to not solely make it the consumers responsibility, and more. Gigi Ganatra Duff, VP of Corporate Affairs for Nordstrom, talked more about the growing efforts of major companies to launch more eco-friendly programs, like Nordstrom's very own beauty recycling program to eliminate unnecessary waste whenever they can. As two experts both heavily involved in individual beauty brands, Lindsay Dahl, SVP, Social Mission, Beautycounter, and Shannon Goldberg, Founder and Chief Zero Waste Officer of Izzy Clean Beauty, both emphasized the idea of "investing" in some products that, although maybe more expensive, leave less of a carbon footprint in the long run, as well as their own responsibilities to have the beauty brands they run do the hard research themselves with their supply chains and retailers that go in to building their products.

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Lexie Sachs, Textiles Director for the Good Housekeeping Institute, kicked off an exciting and insightful panel on sustainable fashion, what exactly it means to be "sustainable" in the fashion industry, the complex issues that face the apparel supply chain and how fashion can make an impact without green washing. Our panelists expertly discussed at how broad the term "sustainable" fashion is and how it is unregulated, often allowing for brands to make false claims without really coming through on those promises. Sam Blumenthal, Director of Consumer Communications for ThredUp, discussed ThredUp's mission of instead using the term "Circular Fashion," with this idea of recirculating clothing that already exists, a trend that is becoming more and more popular with consumers. Both Sonica Singh, Director of Design for Hass, and Associate Professor of Fiber Science & Apparel Design at Cornell University, Dr. Tasha Lewis, followed up with sustainable fashion as an opportunity for more creative brainstorming, working more and more outside the box, not as a burden but as a chance for change. Dr. Lewis also touched on that with the specific idea that if brands can create clothing with an end of life purpose, for example, designing it for easy disassembly purposes, that's another avenue brands can take without creating more of a product, further helping to reduce waste.

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Behind the Brand: Hass

At its core, Avocado Green Brands is an environmental platform, one of the most sustainable brands on the planet. Learn more about their newest endeavor, Hass by AGB, to see how they are taking their sustainability efforts one step further with their new apparel line.

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In this conversation, led by Deputy Lab Director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Nicole Papantoniou, panelists had an in-depth conversation about the food world, discussing everything from the way we eat it, the way we think about it, the way we should continue thinking about it, and the way something as simple as our food and how we get it involves many environmental factors that affect our very world each and every day. Jack Algiere, Farm Director of the Stone Barns Center, discussed how our care for our food and where it comes from directly connects to the investment we have in soils, gardening, plant rearing and more, and how a passion for food should translate to a passion to want environmental factors like these to thrive in healthy and sustainable environments. Robyn O'Brien, author and Food Systems Advocate, spoke about how our polluted food systems now are negatively affecting a future generation that did nothing to deserve this, and engaged with the other panelists about how we can be better to hopefully change that outcome. Frances Moore Lappé, author and co-founder of Small Planet Institute, happily followed that up with the encouraging news that statistics are thankfully showing that more and more organizations that promote sustainable agriculture and popping up, giving us all hope that the fate of future generations is not set it stone, and we should continue to keep fighting to make these sustainable agricultural systems more and more common.

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Good Housekeeping Institute Director of Health, Beauty, and Environmental Sciences Dr. Birnur Aral kicks off the presentation of the winners of Good Housekeeping's 2021 Sustainable Innovation Awards and the thrill of seeing more and more brands submitting their products for the awards as they strive to be more green.

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Winners of Good Housekeeping's 2021 Sustainable Innovation Awards

A panel of expert editors, analysts, scientists, and product experts put the over 180+ submissions this year to the tests to see just how sustainable these brands and products claim to be. As the full breakdown on our site says best,"These awards demonstrate Good Housekeeping’s commitment towards educating our audience on sorting through misleading “greenwashing” claims and honoring products and brands that are making true innovative strides towards a more sustainable economy.From sneakers and cleaning supplies to parenting products and beauty essentials, here are the picks that got top marks.

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Dr. Pedram Shojai leads viewers through a calming session of meditation to center the body and encourage some grounding relaxation.

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Prevention Editor in Chief Sarah Smith sat down with authors Dr. Shanna Swan and Stacey Colino, who co-wrote the insightful book "Countdown:How The Modern World Is Imperiling the Human Race and What You Can Do About It." The book and this discussion delves into the research Dr.Swan, an Environmental and Reproductive Epidemiologist, has conducted herself and written about with award-winning writer Colino, that shows how the changing world is affecting things like sperm count, changing reproductive organs in both male and female individuals, and ultimately threatening the future of the human race. Sarah Smith leads and insightful, though-provoking, and sometimes necessarily shocking conversation about what this research means now and for the future.

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Expert and Campaign Director for Mind the Store Mike Schade breaks down everything to know about PFAS.

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Former Good Housekeeping editor and current Executive Director for Oprah Daily, Tiffany Blackstone, led this exciting fireside chat with philanthropist and activist Amanda Hearst and actress and activist Alysia Reiner to discuss their journey's to becoming major advocates for eco-friendly lifestyle changes, their personal endeavors that lead them to become involved in the green sphere, what day-to-day measures they try to follow to practice the lifestyle they so strongly advocate for, and more.

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Actress, entrepreneur & founder of BaYou with Love jewelry line, Nikki Reed, joined Good Housekeeping Style Director Lori Bergamotto for an intimate fireside chat about how Reed's passion for animal activist as a child got her more and more involved with sustainability and more aware of being less wasteful and more environmentally friendly, especially when she became pregnant with her first child, her next goals for her company as she continues to delve more and more into sustainable jewelry creation, that same idea of circular consumption that many of our previous panelists delved on, and much more.

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Heather White kicks off the closing of our 2021 Raise The Green Bar Summit by sharing how one small thing can affect our changing environment, and how our daily actions as individuals can make a difference in curbing climate change for a more sustainable world.

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Amy Ziff, Founder & Executive Director for MADE SAFE & Nontoxic Certified, thanks everyone for an educating, exciting, insightful and informative summit. Thanks to all who attended our fifth sustainability summit, and we can't wait to see you in 2022!

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