The recent Japanese earthquake and the resulting tsunami devastated the country, particularly its energy infrastructure. With nuclear power no longer energizing Japan, due to the Fukushima disaster, the government is doing everything they can to save energy – including encourage people to dress casually for work. This week, Tokyo saw the launch of Super Cool Biz, a concept designed to promote energy-friendly clothes. The start of initiative began with a fashion show in Tokyo to showcaseeco-friendly fashion.

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By allowing women to wear open-toe sandals and by encouraging men to ditch their ties, the government hope to reduce the amount of energy that is used to power air -conditioning systems.

“As we are lacking electricity, the Japanese government is asking for a 15% reduction in electricity consumption,” environment minister Ryu Matsumoto said. “This is not just about surviving this summer, but this is a big turning point for changing the way Japanese people live.”

The casual clothing trend is expected to last till the end of October and will see employees all around the country ditch the traditional suit for t-shirts, jeans and sandals.

The idea was actually conceived in 2005 when Japan’s Ministry of the Environment began encouraging businesses to help conserve energy by setting air conditioners to 28ºC throughout the summer months. The Cool Biz campaign was designed to ensure that office workers could work in comfort in the face of higher indoor temperatures.

While it means the country is saving power, it also means that “Dress-Down Friday” is no longer as exciting as it used to be.


via Sky News

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