Patagonia said that on June 19 it launched a revamped Footprint Chronicles website with a new format that expands upon the company’s social practices. The Footprint Chronicles is an interactive mini website that reveals to consumers the good and the bad involved in manufacturing outdoor clothing.

The revamp adds the environmental footprint of 166 individual products to their website, becoming the only apparel manufacturer in Europe to offer the public such broad transparency regarding products’ impact on the earth. The updated website also offers live comments posted on Patagonia’s blog (the Cleanest line) about the Footprint Chronicles and hosts a new 15-minute video about Patagonia’s social responsibility efforts.

“We believe it’s important for our customers to know the true environmental and social impact of a garment they purchase,” said Casey Sheahan, president and CEO of Patagonia. “The Footprint Chronicles allows us to do this publicly – and helps our customers make better purchasing decisions.”

He points out that the idea behind the website is to encourage thought and discussion – and to provide easy-to-understand environmental equivalents for each garment’s impact.

“The new site also includes a Join the Discussion section,” said Sheahan. “This allows customers to engage directly in a live conversation with us about how to solve the problems inherent in our manufacturing processes. It’s a unique dialogue to engage in – but one that will ultimately allow us to cause less harm to the planet.”

According to Jill Dumain, Patagonia’s director of environmental programs, the research involved in developing the Chronicles has proved to actually drive major business decisions at Patagonia.

“The Chronicles revealed that transportation makes up only about 1 percent of our overall energy use,” said Dumain. “Had we listened to the current media buzz touting transportation as the largest factor in energy consumption, we might have greatly misplaced our efforts by making strides to geographically shorten our supply chain – which would have massively impacted our business financially, logistically and perhaps even effected product quality – and we would only have reduced our energy savings by 1 percent. Instead, we are focusing our energy on areas where we can truly make a difference – right in the heart of the manufacturing process.”

The Footprint Chronicles includes more than 55 filmed interviews and slideshows of factory workers, farmers, owners, designers and third-party auditors to provide an unprecedented level of transparency both internally and externally – from the factories and manufacturing partners that create its products, to the end of the product’s lifespan. Example for the R2 jacket – new chronicled product from origin of fiber through garment delivery to our distribution center in Reno.