According to a study by Nielsen, global consumers in 60 countries are willing to pay more for products and services from companies committed to making a social and environmental impact. Companies with environmentalism in mind can attract a new wave of consumers by creating low impact products. While it’s the norm to seek out environmentally friendly light bulbs and detergents, there are plenty of everyday items that could be sustainable if companies focused more on the environment and less on their bottom line. From tires to shelving, more companies are working toward reducing their carbon footprint in their products and how they run their manufacturing plants.
Rubber tires generally aren’t thought of for being friendly to the environment. However, the quality and durability of tires and how well they hold up under pressure can directly impact carbon emissions. For example, Continental Tires reduce your overall fuel consumption and CO2 emissions. The company also obtained a “zero landfill” status indicating its plant waste becomes 100 percent reusable and never enters a landfill. Some of the waste is turned into steel, glass, rubber and wood among other materials.
Get a sustainable night’s sleep on a Keetsa eco-friendly mattress. The company designs and makes its own mattresses and works on innovations in its industry. Instead of relying on memory foam made from petroleum oil, Keetsa innovated Bio-Foam to replace a portion of the petroleum with castor bean oil. Its latex mattresses use an all-natural top layer of latex rubber. Keetsa also uses hemp-blend fabric, organic cotton and mixes green tea extract into its Bio-Foam formula for natural antioxidant benefits. Consumers also receive their Keetsa mattresses compressed and sealed in a box for an overall package volume reduction of 75 percent.
Interface Carpet tiles are working toward zero negative environmental impact by 2020. The carpets come from reclaimed fiber and fishing nets among other materials created from factories striving toward sustainability. In 2007, Interface got its water usage down 75 percent, and 74,000 tons of used carpet were removed from landfills. Consumers can pick from hundreds of recycled tiles in a variety of colors. Installation is simple and doesn’t require the need for toxic glue. Instead, Interface employs a panel system where tiles snap in place securely and are ready for use.
PUMA’s InCycle collection features raw materials from biodegradable polymers and organic pesticides. Its efforts help to eliminate the need for harmful chemicals and fertilizers in the cotton-growing process. Its shoes can be shredded and composted back into the environment.
All of Etnies shoes strive toward a healthier plant. The Buy a Shoe, Plant a Tree program has resulted in more than one million trees planted in Costa Rica, Brazil and Africa to date. In 2015, they changed up its motto to Every Shoe Plants a Tree in the rainforest to represent its consumers’ contribution.
Way Basics makes its zBoards from recycled papers to make its line of storage products. The shelves are also free of toxic VOC and formaldehyde materials. Putting together your shelves works a bit differently than particle board varieties. Instead of glue and nails, strong 3M brand adhesive strips are used to piece together your unit any way you like. Once the shelving units are tossed out and recycled, they can be turned back into recycled paper and continue the cycle.
The bottom line? It’s all about protecting the environment.