Dr. Regina Henkel
Author:
Dr. Regina Henkel

Trees Instead of Climate Change: New Sustainable Solutions in the Sports Industry

Can Consumption Help the Climate? These 4 Sports Brands Are Trying

Developing less environmentally harmful products can only be a start. It would be even better if the purchase of products could have a positive impact on the environment. Some brands in the sports and outdoor industry want to try to do just that with their business ideas.

The name says it all: for every product sold, Tentree from Canada plants ten trees.
The name says it all: for every product sold, Tentree from Canada plants ten trees.

Tentree: One Billion Trees

The three founders of the Canadian streetwear label Tentree actually had only one fixed goal: By 2030 they want to plant one billion trees to actively combat climate change. But how is this to be financed? With a clothing label! In 2013 Tentree was founded exactly for this purpose. For every product sold, ten trees are planted, which is still the core of the business idea today. Each product has a code that tells you exactly where the trees were planted. This is how retailers and consumers become part of the climate protection, so the idea. The three founders do not come from the fashion business and still do not understand their business that way. "We see ourselves primarily as tree planters," says David Luba, one of the founders of Tentree. And so far this has worked out quite well: According to the website, the current number of trees is approximately 50 Million (as of November 11, 2020) worldwide. Of course, the registered B Corporation is also committed to the highest level of sustainability in terms of materials and production.

Somwr: Climate Positive Products

"We don't want to be part of the problem, we want to be part of the solution" is the motto of the new streetwear label Somwr, which has also been presented at the ISPO Re.Start Days. The two founders Timo Perschke and Svein Rasmussen know exactly what they are talking about. Both have done lasting pioneering work in their fields: Perschke founded the sustainable outerwear label Pyua and Rasmussen is CEO of the eco surf brand Starboard from Thailand. Their common goal is to make more climate-friendly products by using the proceeds from sales to finance sustainable projects.
Starboard has been implementing many of these projects for a long time, for example the promise to collect the appropriate weight of sea waste with every surfboard purchased and to replant a mangrove tree. "But we also want to support research, for example into new materials or better data on the climate balance," says Perschke. In the introductory phase, the collection consists of T-shirts and sweatshirts and is currently being launched in 16 countries.

Somwr is a German-Thai streetwear initiative and is currently being launched.
Somwr is a German-Thai streetwear initiative and is currently being launched.

Nikin: One New Tree per Product

Fashion for Trees: The Swiss eco fashion brand Nikin also produces sustainable streetwear and plants a tree for every product sold. The mission of the founders Robin Gnehm and Nicholas Hänny is to support global reforestation and make the world (again) greener. Nikin's "Tree Wear" already has the good in it: it is made to a large extent from organic cotton, bamboo and recycled materials, and it is produced in an environmentally friendly and fair way. Almost all products are made in Europe.
To ensure that the TreePants, TreeCaps, TreeShirts, TreeSocks and Swimwear - also called TreeShorts Treekinis or TreeTowels - can be worn for as long as possible, the collection focuses on basics for women, men, children and unisex models. The colour range is also neutral. Founded in 2016, the tree planting campaigns of the Swiss have resulted in over half a million more trees growing on our planet. For the planting campaigns, Nikin supports the non-profit organisation One Tree Planted from the USA, which implements reforestation projects all over the world.

For every product sold, Nikin from Switzerland has a tree planted.
For every product sold, Nikin from Switzerland has a tree planted.

Pangaia: Innovations against the Climate Crisis

Every technology should solve an environmental problem. This is the intention of the Pangaia label, which is made up of a global collective of scientists, technologists, artists and designers. With its small collections, Pangaia wants to further promote important solutions. For example, insulation jackets with a filling of dried flowers or T-shirts made of peppermint impregnated seaweed fibres.
One of the latest projects is the Pangaia Coral Reef Collection, which is made of recycled and GOTS-certified cotton. What is special, however, is the overall objective: for every product sold, Pangaia plants a mangrove tree with the SeaTrees organisation. Mangrove trees store a particularly large amount of CO2. Their preservation is seen as a strategy to help the dying coral reefs survive the effects of the climate crisis.

Pangaia sees itself as a movement, not a brand. The collection is part of the message.
Pangaia sees itself as a movement, not a brand. The collection is part of the message.
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Dr. Regina Henkel
Author:
Dr. Regina Henkel
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