Adidas partners with Allbirds to reduce footwear industry’s carbon emissions

Adidas has partnered with Allbirds to significantly reduce the footwear industry’s carbon footprint, contributing to global efforts to combat climate change. The collaboration aims to find more sustainable methods across the entire manufacturing and supply chain. It also targets the development of a sports performance shoe with the lowest carbon footprint ever.

Currently, it is estimated that 700 million metric tons of CO2 emissions are produced by the global footwear industry each year, with the average running shoe believed to have a carbon footprint of around 13.6 kg CO2.

Adidas and footwear company Allbirds have both committed to achieving carbon neutrality and the brands hope the new partnership will help create an industry shift in how shoes are produced. They will combine their expertise to explore how renewable energy and fuels can be utilised in areas such as materials, manufacturing facilities and transportation methods.

“There is an urgent need to reduce our global carbon number, and this mission is bigger than just Allbirds or Adidas,” commented Tim Brown, co-CEO of Allbirds. “Whether we realise it or not this is a race that we are all running together as a planet and it is one that trumps the day-to-day competition of individual companies. I am hopeful that this partnership will be an example for others to follow as we pursue a more sustainable, net zero carbon future.”

They also want to use the initiative to launch a carbon-friendly sports performance shoe by 2021. This product will have to meet Adidas’ performance standard whilst also achieving the lowest carbon footprint ever measured using Allbirds’ life cycle assessment tool.

“Our brands don’t want to just participate in the sustainability conversation, we want to continue being catalysts and creators of substantial improvement,” said James Carnes, VP of brand strategy at Adidas. “The recent progress that our brands have made in the name of sustainable innovation has created the perfect momentum for this partnership to influence industry practices forever.”