Proposals to tax clothing have been welcomed by politicians who say fashion is having a “hugely detrimental” impact on the environment.

A report published today by an environmental audit committee- a group of cross party MPs – has said a penny tax should be levied on items of clothing sold by British retailers.

The report said these measures would raise £35 million to recycle clothing and tackle waste in the fashion industry.

According to the report, retailers in the UK create a million tonnes of waste every year – higher than any other country in Europe.

Leonie Cooper, Labour’s London Assembly environment spokesperson, welcomed the report.

Ms Cooper said: “Fast fashion has a hugely detrimental impact on our environment, with a shocking 235 million items of clothing sent to landfill per year.

“In the capital, we are seeing the results of our failure to get a grip on the issue, with unwanted clothing ending up dumped on our streets.

“This report drives home the fact that major retailers need step up to the mark and provide the means for their customers to recycle old clothing.”

Research from Ms Cooper in 2018 revealed that London accounts for more than a third of fly-tipping in England.

The cost of investigations into fly-tipping and the disposal of illegal rubbish in London totalled at £18.4 million in 2016.

Ms Cooper added: “That’s why I’m working with local authorities from across London, holding a seminar at City Hall in March, to share best practice to tackle the scourge of mess on our streets.

“It is vital that our fashion and retail industry swiftly acts upon this wake-up call.”