New Balance announced a range of strategic alliances to support its climate goals. “Sustainability has always been a top priority for New Balance, and our commitment to fostering a healthier planet has never been stronger,” said John Stokes, New Balance head of global sustainability. “We need to act with urgency, and our work is further strengthened by like-minded alliances that help extend our reach. Creating and sustaining a healthier planet requires a collective effort, and we couldn’t be more excited for the work ahead with some truly incredible individuals and organizations by our side.”
As part of its Responsible Leadership strategy, New Balance is moving toward a low carbon with a set of goals now and into 2030:
- New Balance will use 100 percent renewable electricity across its global operations by 2025 and aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030 as a signatory of the UN Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action.
- New Balance aims to send zero waste to landfills from its footwear factories by 2025, and the brand is launching an apparel repair pilot in 2021 as part of its work to address post-consumer waste and establish more significant levels of circularity.
- Polyester and leather are the two largest drivers of climate impact for New Balance. As a first step toward lowering its impacts, the brand will source 50 percent recycled polyester, and 100 percent preferred leather by 2025.
- In coordination with 1% for the Planet, through 2021, New Balance will donate 1 percent of the MSRP’s from its Fresh Foam Hierro v6 sold in the U.S. to the company.
- New Balance is working toward 100 percent of women in its footwear factories to benefit from education and skills courses by 2025.
- Through 2021, the company will work with the GIZ Energy Support Program (ESP) to improve energy efficiency in its supply chain and develop rooftop solar energy projects. New Balance was selected as a key partner to enroll its Vietnam footwear suppliers into the Small Energy Efficiency Group (SEEG) of ESP, providing energy training to factory employees to identify energy-saving measures. New Balance is also working with GIZ’s Project Development Programme to assess rooftop solar power across some of its suppliers and then develop projects to compete with conventional energy supplies.
New Balance recently partnered with The Renewal Workshop to pilot an apparel repair program this summer and a training workshop to educate designers on designing future apparel for repairability and garment recycling.
New Balance’s Green Leaf Icon
The brand’s green leaf icon identifies apparel products that meet its environmentally preferred material adoption standards. New Balance garments with the icon are made with 50 percent or more ecologically selected materials.
“Our efforts to grow our environmentally preferred material portfolio is squarely focused on driving systemic change where it will have the greatest impact, step-by-step, ingredient-by-ingredient, season after season,” said Cynthia Maletz, senior manager, product creation platforms, New Balance. “The green leaf standard lets us capture that work in an understandable way for the consumer and has helped build momentum within the brand and provides greater focus across business units.”
New Balance x Jaden Smith Vision Racer ReWorked
On April 23, 2021, New Balance will release its Vision Racer ReWorked made with Spinnex, a partially recycled fiber that incorporates a minimum of 30 percent factory textile waste through its continued collaboration with Jaden Smith.
“Whether it’s starting just water or collaborating with New Balance, I’m energetically interested in bringing more sustainable options and features into everyday lifestyle items and everyday culture,” said Smith. “These items act as a lens into ways more people can participate in better global health with simple choices while learning and becoming smarter, more aware of the solutions that are out there. We need to demand them and choose them.”
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Photo courtesy New Balance