The Timberland Company, an outdoor footwear and clothing company, recently announced it will be launching its eco friendly “Earthkeepers 2.0″ boot in the fall. The boot is being designed to enable disassembly and recycling. Customers will be able to return the boots to any Timberland store for recycling when they don’t want them anymore, rather than throwing them away.
“We can be deliberate about designing the ‘greenest’ footwear out there — but if at the end of the day those products still end up in a landfill, we haven’t really closed the loop on our environmental responsibility,” sad Brian Moore, VP Men’s Product. “With Earthkeepers 2.0, we have an opportunity to influence the environmental impact of our products in a way we haven’t before – after the point of purchase.”
Here are some of the Earthkeepers 2.0 boot’s features that will allow Timberland to recycle or re-use 80% of the materials used:
- Leather refurbished at the company’s factory in the Dominican Republic.
- Green Rubber manufactured soles that will go back to a Green Rubber factory in Georgia for recycling. Green Rubber’s D-Link technology breaks down tire-rubber so that it can be recycled repeatedly back into new products, including Timberland outsoles.
- Removable metal hardware that is reusable in new footwear or can be recycled.
- Polyester lining that can be recycled into new polyester products.
This is another great example of how increasing consumer demand for more environmentally friendly products can pressure makers of traditionally non-green products to provide better alternatives (although Timberland in particular is a pretty socially responsible company). I’m a big fan of Timberland footwear myself, so I can’t wait to take these boots on a good hike in the fall!