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Canada's Next Top Models?

Late last month, global fashion giant Chanel made renewable energy the star of its 2013 ready-to-wear show at the Grand Palais in Paris. A line of enormous wind turbines graced the runway, which was paved with faux photovoltaics. Shimmering photovoltaic motifs showed up on various dresses as well.

For scale, that’s Karl Lagerfeld at lower left, dwarfed by one of the 19-meter high windmills on the set.

Meanwhile, weeks earlier, U.K. designer Vivianne Westwood declared that there were more important things to discuss than  her skirts and dresses: “I’m not going to discuss the collection..I can’t talk about fashion,” she told the Associated Press. “I’m too preoccupied with using it as a vehicle for talking about climate change, which is an incredible danger. Everybody who’s eco-conscious is fighting the revolution and of course we need to get more people involved, to pressure the governments, to sort this out, because we have to sort this out.”

We think this is all good. If the solutions are perceived to be sexy, and unusual suspects are seen to be making them a priority, then so will their fans and followers.  That’s something that Madison Avenue figured out a long time ago. Those who want more blades and panels in the energy mix should take heed.