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Hot Air, Less Clothes? Climate Changes Office Attire
Lifestyle

Hot Air, Less Clothes? Climate Changes Office Attire

Super Cool Biz Japan - dressing for climate change

It’s HOT outside.

With summer upon us, getting dressed for work can be a painful exercise.

Ties or jackets in 95*F? Ouch.

Turns out that some businesses are noticing that what we wear can cause pain to our planet.  Relaxed summer wardrobes are a good start to easing the pain: the fewer layers you’re wearing, the less air conditioning you need to be comfortable. Bring on the polo shirts!

The short suit is also very trendy at the moment, although it may have less to do with energy savings than with fashion.

Japan’s Super Cool Biz Campaign

The most extreme example of power savings from dress codes is probably Japan’s Super Cool Biz campaign. Now an annual campaign pushed by the Environmental Ministry, it is critical in hot summer months. Since the Fukushima plant was crippled in the 2011 earthquake, there just isn’t enough power being generated by the plants that remain online.

To prevent blackouts, the government is trying to avoid the need for air conditioning at temperatures that keep men in suits and ties comfortable (ladies in skirts are less likely to feel hot if the air conditioning is set at 78 or even the 82 recommended by the Japanese government). There are plenty of examples of their proposed dress code from their fashion show!

Is it time to change the dress code in your business? Tell us in the comments!

 

Kristen Suzda is an urban eco-geek who keeps worms in her basement and rides her bike everywhere, and is slowly DIYing her Philadelphia row house.  Follow her musings on sustainability, biking, and more @blondeonbicycle.

 

Photo: Chicago Solar Architects

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