“The standard sneaker emits 12.5 kg CO2e. Our average shoe emits 7.6 kg CO2e.” ” Our goal—have no carbon footprint from the start. The first step to reduce our footprint is to measure it. And even though we’re not at zero yet, we can be. It’s all part of the plan.”
“So if you’re curious how our average footprint of 7.6 kg CO2e stacks up with your everyday life, it’s about the same amount of emissions emitted by…
・Driving 19 miles in a car
・Running 5 loads of laundry in the dryer
・Making 22 chocolate bars”
— Allbirds shoe website
Allbirds is a US-based sustainable footwear company that calculates the carbon footprint of every sneaker that they manufacture.
“A Journey of a Thousand Miles Begins with a Single Step”
First thing first, CO2e is ‘carbon dioxide equivalent emissions’ i.e. the greenhouse gases which are involved in manufacturing products. In this case, it is a shoe, the calculation includes the environmental impact of materials (5.7 kg CO2e), use (01. kg CO2e), and end of life (0.2 kg CO2e) but excludes transport emissions.
How are they able to do? The secret is the natural materials that are sourced from environment-friendly regions and leveraging recycle waste, some of them include –
- The fiber of the shoe is made with Sheep wool from New Zealand, probably because of the founder Tim Brown hails from the country. The extraction process of sheep wool uses 60% less energy than materials used in typical synthetic shoes.
- Shoe midsole made with sugarcane extracts, sourced from Brazil. (Hope no one tries the sweet taste)
- The insole is made using castor bean oil, which emits less carbon than petroleum-based foam. (hmm… castor bean oil, is this not something we use to moisturize the skin, anyway, this is for shoe insole)
- Shoelaces are made with recycled plastic bottles.
- The shoebox packaging is done on recycled cardboard.
According to the company sources, they are the first shoe brand to label its products with those numbers; co-founder Joey Zwillinger compares the initiative to including calories on a food label.