As a Public Benefit Corporation, sustainability isn’t a ‘nice to have’ says Allbirds co-founder Tim Brown. The environment has held a seat at the table since day dot and it is woven into the very fabric of the company.
Allbirds has a contract to their customers to continuously improve their products and business. Good champions that Allbirds have relentlessly sought out new ways to lessen their environmental impact – and when they can’t find one, they invent it. Where others see plastic bottles, they see recycled laces; where others see plants, they see green shoe soles.
Next up, they are working to remove the small amount of virgin plastic in their supply chain. By sourcing natural and renewable materials, like New Zealand family-farmed merino wool and sugarcane by-product to replace petroleum in EVA, Allbirds has actively sequestered carbon through nearly every element of their bio-based shoes.
That said, by simply existing in this world, Allbirds are obviously aware that they, as a business, create a carbon footprint. And all businesses – whose footprints are way bigger than any individual’s – need to change.
Globally, the footwear industry emits 700 million tonnes of carbon dioxide each year. And while Allbirds’ environmental impact is much smaller than most, one tonne is still one too many.
That’s why they’re going 100 per cent carbon neutral with the Allbirds Carbon Fund – a self-imposed internal carbon tax which funds emissions reduction projects.
Beginning this year (2019), for every tonne of carbon Allbirds emits as a business – from the sheep on the farms to the lights in the headquarters – the Allbirds Carbon Fund will support verified emissions reduction projects like planting trees that capture and store carbon and building wind energy to replace dirty fossil fuel energy.
The best part? Allbirds customers will be able to decide which projects they support with each new purchase–land, energy, or air.