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Backpacker Magazine – March 2008

Green Gear Report Card 2008

The first industry-wide survey about which gear manufacturers are positively impacting the environment

by: Berne Broudy

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Fully recycled sleeping bags. Employee incentives for biking to work. Wind-powered office space. Outdoor-gear makers are taking significant steps to improve transparency and reduce their carbon output, and where better to present the first industry-wide survey than in BACKPACKER'S Gear Guide pages? We asked companies large and small to describe their planet-cooling initiatives; 58 responded with tangible, positive steps. While some manufacturers are still striving to identify the most effective changes and show substantive gains, the overall signs of momentum and innovation are impressive.

How to Use This Guide
Wonder what your favorite outdoor brand is doing to promote sustainability? Many are combining greener manufacturing and business practices to reduce impact. Use these icons to determine where each company is making an effort.

green buildGreen Building
These companies use earth-friendly materials and/or efficient heating and cooling.

employee bldgEmployee Incentives
Benefits include paid incentives for eco-volunteerism and alternative transportation (e.g. bike commuting).

char giveCharitable Giving
These brands donate some percentage of earnings to conservation or environmental causes.

renew energyRenewable Energy/Offsets
They purchase alternative power options to offset, minimize, or replace fossil-fuel consumption.

end of lifeEnd-of-Life Recyclability
Product line contains items that can be recycled as is, or broken down into recyclable parts.

organicRenewable or Organic Content
The company's products contain eco-friendly, renewable, or certified organic materials.

green packGreen Packaging
Packaging is recycled, renewable, or significantly minimzed, and/or it contains soy inks and other earth-friendly materials.


If you see one of these icons, it means the company makes bags, pads, shoes, packs, tents, or apparel containing recycled or renewable materials.

bagsBags/Pads
bootsShoes
packsPacks
tentsTents
apparelApparel


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READERS COMMENTS

nathan
Nov 24, 2012

Going green is alive and well in today's ecological aware society. Having a laptop case that is well built to satisfy the needs of consumers is of great importance as well. As a photographer, I require a bag that I can hold my camera gear as well as my laptop. Going green with a laptop case may pose some challenges, avoid nylon and going with cotton or hemp material may be the start, if they are available. http://www.electronicluggage.com/

Jerry
Jul 15, 2008

Having tents and other gear made in China is not Green!

Dan
May 19, 2008

Osprey Packs can be found at this address: http://www.ospreypacks.com/

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