Together with our members, the Netherlands Water Partnership works towards a sustainable and Water. Driven. Future. From 21 to 25 November 2022, we are running our Water. Driven. Friday. campaign, where we will draw attention to relevant themes around water and some of the, sometimes overlooked, environmental consequences of Black Friday. During the week, NWP will present sustainable solutions for global water-related problems that our members are working on. Together, we will create a Water. Driven. Friday. and raise awareness about water as a driver for change.
One of the biggest shopping events of the year occur on Friday, 25 November. Consumers are reminded for a good few weeks before to get the early discounts in various shops. Eleven years ago, Black Friday was still primarily known as an American phenomenon. Now, it has also become popular in the Netherlands. Research shows that 97 percent of Dutch people are familiar with the concept, and that 60 percent are, to some extent, interested in it.
This unconscious shopping behaviour does not take into consideration an environmental cost though. In 2021, online shopping during Black Friday in the United Kingdom was expected to emit 386,243 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions, the same weight as 3,679 blue whales. Due to the many transactions being made, more emissions are created, more waste is generated, and more trucks are dispatched to meet the high demand.
Black Friday not only contributes to more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The extra waste that people generate because of Black Friday is significant, too. Think of cardboard boxes, bags, packaging, etc. The fashion industry, and especially the fast fashion, already pollutes as it is. However, Black Friday worsens it, as more and more people are encouraged to purchase tempting deals. With this in mind, there are more and more people who have started questioning shopping events such as Black Friday, and even are organising parallel initiatives such as Green or Blue Fridays.
From 21 to 25 November, NWP draws attention to relevant themes around water and a sustainable use of resources. Each day, we present crucial water and environmental-related problems around Black Friday that we, as a society, face these days. By putting emphasis on the impact of water on the planet and in our life, we want to encourage our network to change their consumer behaviour. We hope that we can help them reflect on the consequence of the consumerism around Black Friday so that they start making their decisions based on the environmental cost, which is mostly invisible in the shopping madness all over the word.
During this week, we present some of the sustainable solutions that NWP members have developed to tackle current water-related problems. Together with you and our members, we can create a Water. Driven. Friday.