Patagonia Denim Redefines the Blue Jean

F15_DenimDealerEmail-2This story from Moja Gear highlights the moves by Patagonia to produce a more sustainable – and more ethical – denim jean.

Cleaner, Safer, and Fair Trade, Too: Patagonia Denim Redefines the Blue Jean

We all own at least one pair, and probably wear them more than we’d like to admit. They fit great, and maybe only bear a rip or two. But have you ever considered what goes into producing that single pair of beloved pants that we all so devotedly rely on?

The unfortunate truth of that matter is that the manufacturing process of most denim out there is a dirty one.

The jeans in which we romp in the woods and frolic down the street were more likely than not made from cotton grown with pesticides, herbicides, and fertilizers —with names we can’t even pronounce. They resulted in more gallons of wastewater and CO2 emissions than we’d ever wish to see or breathe. And that denim wrapping our legs on the daily, was likely sewn together by the hands of a worker in sub-optimal working conditions and receiving inadequate pay.

You can read the full story here.

Posted in clothing, non sweat shop labour, renewable materials | Leave a comment

Backcountry film festival

BCFF-2014-15-PosterNow in its 10th year the Winter Wildlands Alliance Backcountry Film Festival celebrates the human powered winter experience through film. The festival aims to entertain while helping to raise funds and awareness for Winter Wildlands and our like-minded partners.

The Backcountry Film Festival premieres in Boise, Idaho, and then travels to more than 100 locations worldwide.  Along the way, it will be viewed by more than 20,000 outdoor enthusiasts and raise more than $110,000 each year for local organisations working on advocacy, snow safety, outdoor education and Snow School programs.

Melbourne show

Thursday May 21, 2015

Cinema at RMIT. Building 80.

Level 1, Room 2, 445 Swanston Street.

Suggested donation: $8 conc & students/ $15 waged.

All proceeds go to the Friends of the Earth climate campaign.

Facebook page here.

The cinema is Room 80.01.02 (It can be hard to find, best bet is to enter off A’Beckett Street, just by the Oxford Scholar Hotel (map here). Building 80 is on Swanston, between Latrobe and Franklin street, opposite the main RMIT campus.

Feel free to meet at the Oxford Scholar for a drink from 6.30pm. Please aim to arrive at the Cinema around 7, we will start the films at 7.15pm.

The festival will also be shown during the 2015 Splitfest (splitboarding festival) being held in the Snowy Mountains, on friday August 22 in Jindabyne.

Please check here for a listing of the films being shown.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Waterproof, Breathable, and Toxin-Free

IMGP9709Patagonia is upping its own environmental ante, with a $1 million investment in Beyond Surface Technologies, a Swiss company that’s pushing petrochemicals out of the gear closet.

In this article by Mary Catherine O’Connor from the Outside website, it is announced that Patagonia has invested US$1 million in a Swiss startup that’s developing plant-based chemicals it believes can replace conventional perfluorinated chemicals (PFC) -based finishes in water-repellent materials.

This could mean the end of the current reliance on petrochemicals in our rain and snow gear.

You can read the article here.



Posted in clothing, renewable materials, sustainable design | Leave a comment

Spring 2015 Worn Wear Tour

patagonia truckAnother lovely project from Patagonia:

Out to change our relationship with stuff, this spring Patagonia’s biodiesel repair wagon will travel coast to coast repairing clothing for free, teaching folks how to fix things themselves and selling used Patagonia clothing. Bring us your tired, well-loved clothing for repair. If you don’t have any, we’ll supply it. Fix it and you can keep it. Join us for local food and drink, and celebrate the stories we wear.

This spring our biodiesel repair truck will travel from California to New York doing free clothing repairs, teaching you how to fix your own gear and selling used Patagonia clothing. Bring us your tired, well-loved clothing for repair. If you don’t have any, we’ll supply it. Fix it and you can keep it. Join us for local food and drinks and celebrate the stories we wear.

Full details, plus a video, can be found here.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Eco Challenge Gold Coast 2015

From the organisers:

We are proud to announce that the Eco Challenge Gold Coast 2015 event is locked in for March 15, 2015 at Tugun Surf Life Saving Club 29 O’Connor St, Tugun QLD 4224

Wooden-boards-900x440The event will again be part of the Bleach Festival and is a free family friendly surfing lifestyle community event which will comply with sustainable event management guidelines and promote alternative surfing products & services & the natural & social environment.

Further info here.

Facebook page for the event here.

From the Gold Coast Bulletin:

A SURFING competition with “new” wooden surfboards is coming to the Gold Coast.

The inaugural Surf Rider Foundation Eco Challenge will be held at Tugun Surf Life Saving Club this month as part of Bleach Festival to promote sustainable coastal lifestyles.

The competition is open to surfers wanting to ride surfboards only recently brought out from history books — the ancient Hawaiian alaia.

Despite being used for hundreds of years, the board was forgotten in the 20th century because, at no thicker than 24mm and without fins, it was thought it could not angle across a wave.

Posted in low impact lifestyle, surfing, sustainable design | 1 Comment

It’s all about transparency! Where Great Design and Business Ethics Collide

The following comes from James Williams, the founder of Keebunga.

keebungaA new product, just launched on the Kickstarter crowdfunding platform is leading the way in transparent business practices.

The Keebunga hard shell key case, is beautiful to look at, tactile and functional but it’s also completely revolutionary in how it’s being sold.

The small start up company, based in Cornwall, is responding to the growing desire in society for openness and honesty in business.

“We decided to give customers all the information they might want about our product, from where it is made to who it’s made by and a detailed break down of exactly how much it cost us and how much mark up we’re making,” says James Williams, Keebunga’s founder and director.

James, a committed surfer, is keenly interested in sustainability and protecting the environment. He found that in pursuing these ethics within manufacturing he was bombarded with so much conflicting information that the best way was to give customers all the facts about his products.

Continue reading

Posted in adventure sports, non sweat shop labour, surfing, sustainable design | Leave a comment

Paddy Pallin and the environment

The Paddy Pallin stores fill a particular niche in the Australian outdoor equipment landscape. They are well known and still sell general and technical equipment, rather than just concentrating on ‘adventure wear’. And they stock not only other companies gear, they also have their own brand, giving them the potential of greater control over work place conditions and material sustainability.

The company has recently launched a community blog, which features an updated version of the companies approach to the environment:

The Importance of the Environment to Paddy Pallin

At Paddy Pallin, concern for the environment is not just an important issue; it’s a way of life, a commitment that governs many aspects of the company. It’s an inseparable part of the ethos of Paddy Pallin. It’s one of our core values. As such, we are constantly striving to reduce our environmental impact through innovations in all areas of the company’s operations. Ever since Paddy Pallin was founded in 1930, we have been a strong advocate and practitioner of eco-responsible actions. This commitment is spearheaded by the actions of the founder Paddy Pallin during his long life and today by his family, Robert, Nancy and Tim Pallin.

Why is Green the Colour of Paddy Pallin

Concern for the environment is one of the core values of Paddy Pallin. Ever since Paddy Pallin was established in 1930, Paddy Pallin the company and Paddy Pallin the man have demonstrated a strong commitment to sustainability. This ethic is continued on today by Robert and Nancy Pallin who now own Paddy Pallin. It’s an intrinsic part of our ethical, socially responsible approach to doing business.

Why Green is Much More than a Colour at Paddy Pallin.

Green has always been our company’s official colour. But more importantly, it’s an essential part of how we do business. Here are some examples:
• We have always printed our catalogues on recycled paper in the past
• We print our catalogues on paper that is PEFC accredited. The paper mill and printer are guided by the rules set out in the international standard ISO 14001 Environmental Management Standard. This measure, combined with other considerations, led our Winter 11 Handbook to win the Environment and Sustainability Award from the Australian Catalogue Association.
• We have always promoted responsible consumption and respect for nature
• We have supported a number of environmental causes over the past 20 years through our ‘Don’t Bag the Environment’ campaign which encourages customers not to take unnecessary shopping bags
• We use recycled, reclaimed and non-toxic materials in the renovation of our Little Bourke Street store
• We have long shared green tips with our customers and employees
• We actively search for products with an environmental message to present in our stores
• We have a long history of providing prizes for the Nature Conservation Council of NSW’s World Environment Day Awards. Paddy Pallin is proud to be providing the prize for “Rising Star Award”, a new award presented to an outstanding environmentalist under the age of 30.
• We are in the process of switching our stores to energy suppliers with environmentally sustainable credentials
• We encourage our staff to ride or walk to work by providing them with showers in our newer stores
• We have produced paper carry bags sourced from new growth forest and can be recycled
• We have long been a supporter of Bush Heritage Australia and assisted them with their fundraising efforts

Q: Is the environment important to Paddy Pallin?
A: Yes. We consider protecting the environment one of the most critical issues of our time. It is incumbent on every company and individual to act responsibly and to do what they can to minimize their environmental impact. Long before climate change became a household term, Paddy Pallin supported a wide range of conservation organisations and sustainability practices.

Q: How does Paddy Pallin demonstrate its commitment to the environment?
A: In multiple ways, big and small. From purchasing sustainable products to the way we refit our new stores; from financial support of environmental organisations to helping raise awareness among our staff and customers about green issues; from initiating campaigns such as “Don’t Bag the Environment” to encourage the reduction of bag usage to providing showers in our new stores to encourage staff to ride to work; from donations made through the Paddy Pallin foundation to printing our catalogues on PEFC accredited, Paddy Pallin is a proponent and practitioner of responsible, environmentally sustainable policies.

Q: Does Paddy Pallin sell any eco-friendly products?
A: Yes, more and more every season. We are continually working with our suppliers to source products that reduce the impact on the environment. Recycled fabrics in fleece and packs are now available as well as natural sustainable fabrics such as wool and soya. No longer limited to just clothing Paddy Pallin is now stocking packs and footwear which has been made with fabrics and components which are recycled or have a reduced impact on the environment. These products are identified in our catalogue and online store with the Minimising Environmental Impact logo Paddy Pallin introduced in 2007.

Q: Are Paddy Pallin stores green?
A: Not all of them but all the new stores will be, as much as possible. Increasingly, Paddy Pallin integrates sustainable practices in new store fitouts or major renovations, including the use of water soluble paints, biodegradable flooring made from 50% pre-consumer recycled content, energy-efficient lighting powered by a green energy provider. When renovating a store, we always strive to minimise the amount of garbage and waste. That’s why we recycle and reuse existing materials as much as possible. We also provide showers to encourage staff to ride to work reducing pollution and carbon emissions. These principals have been applied for the renovation of our largest store in Little Bourke st, Melbourne.

Q: How does Paddy Pallin handle its suppliers when it comes to the environment?
A: Sustainability is an important criterion in our choice of vendors and brand partners. Although Paddy Pallin cannot control the actions of its suppliers, we clearly favour those who are more eco-responsible.

Q: Is Paddy Pallin involved with any environmental organisations?
A: Yes, many. Here is a partial list of organisations that Paddy Pallin has supported over the years through the Don’t Bag the Environment Campaign and other programs: Save the Bilby Fund, Save the Grey Nurse Shark Fund, The WA Toad Muster, Tasmanian Devil Facial Tumour Disease research, the Nature Conservation Council of NSW, Bush Heritage Australia, Save the Blue Gum High Forest campaign, Save the Southern Brown Bandicoot campaign. In addition the Paddy Pallin Foundation annually provides grants to land holders to help preserve natural ecosystems and supports a scientific grant to aid research into environmental conservation and sustainability.

Q: What is the Paddy Pallin Foundation?
A: The Paddy Pallin Foundation is a charitable organisation established by the Pallin family. The objective of the foundation is to enable Paddy Pallin and its customers and friends to contribute to better conservation of the natural environment for future generations and the animals and plants that inhabit them. To find out more about the Paddy Pallin Foundation and its programs visit

Q: Can Paddy Pallin do more for the environment?
A: Yes, and we will. While we are proud of our actions in the environmental area, we are well aware there is much more to be done. We can never do enough when it comes to reducing our eco-footprint and supporting those working to protect our planet. When it comes to the environment, we are not yet where we would like to be but every effort counts. Each one of us must take responsibility and make a difference as there is no alternative if our earth, as we know it, is to be saved for future generations.

Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment