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Westwood Pearls

Vivienne Westwood has been honoured with a Good Energy Award in recognition of her environmental activism at a special event to mark Earth Day. Hearst Good Energy Talks is a three-hour digital event featuring presentations on sustainability, broadcast live from Milan on various Hearst Italia brand Facebook profiles — including Elle Italia, Harper’s Bazaar Italia and Esquire Italia — on April 22nd.

The Good Energy Award is given to figures from different industries who have made a significant impact on sustainable development in their field. Vivienne Westwood is the only person from the fashion industry to be honoured this year. The award itself takes the form of an ornamental apple tree, native to Italy, which is often planted in cities for its ability to attract insects and birds, intercept fine dust, absorb carbon dioxide, and produce oxygen.

Westwood Pearls

In a special recorded message, Vivienne said “I want to thank you so much for the Good Energy Award for activism. Italy knows me better than anybody because Italian press have supported me up to the hilt and I produce there.”

She continued: “I’ve always combined fashion and activism and on the day of my 80th birthday, our Milan team sent me an article of my life in an important newspaper and under which was the news that they will no longer allow cruise ships into Venice, I was so thrilled. So, I am relying on you, Italy, to help me save the world. Stop climate change. Stop War.”.

Vivienne has long been vocal about the problems of pollution and erosion associated with large cruise ships entering Venice’s historic centre via the Giudecca canal, and made the city’s environmental issues the focal point of our SS16 campaign, shot by Juergen Teller. Earlier this month, Italy’s Culture Minister finally announced a ban on the vessels, following a request from Unesco. The ban makes permanent the current coronavirus-related restrictions on tourist ships, which have been credited with improving the water quality in Venice’s lagoons during the pandemic.

In addition to the presentation of Vivienne’s award, Hearst Good Energy Talks featured five-minute talks from a range of sustainability-focused speakers including explorer Alex Bellini, environmental scientist Maria Sole Bianco, and chef Massimo Bottura.