Online running shoes, running clothing and outdoor gear retailer SportsShoes.com has offset the carbon emissions it has generated directly since the company’s founding in 1982.
This news coincides with the retailer celebrating its 40th anniversary and supports its previously stated commitment of becoming the world’s most sustainable running equipment retailer by 2025.
SportsShoes.com offers customers more than 17,000 products from 150 global running and outdoor brands. From a running perspective, these include Asics, Nike, Adidas, Hoka and New Balance whilst in terms of outdoor they include Haglöfs, Montane, Rab and Patagonia.
Driving SportsShoes.com’s activities to enable it to achieve this ambitious pledge is its continually evolving ‘Leave No Footprints’ sustainability strategy. The strategy, which was developed in conjunction with sustainable innovation consultancy Ape, involves a full impact assessment of the business to calculate the size and composition of its carbon footprint. This supports the company in continually identifying and implementing more sustainable practices in every aspect of its operations.
SportsShoes.com managing director, Brett Bannister, says: “We are very proud of our 40 years of business. To celebrate, we thought we would do something a bit different and take action to ensure SportsShoes.com is sustainable for another 40 years and beyond. We were founded at a time when very few people knew what a carbon footprint was. Now that everyone does, and now that we want to be the world’s most sustainable running equipment retailer, we must continuously improve every aspect of our business to achieve that goal.
“We have undertaken time to understand, monitor and minimise our environmental footprint including that of our supply chain and suppliers. We are pleased by what we have achieved so far, but also know there is a long way to go. We are not going to stand still and will keep up the pace on our sustainability journey for the benefit of everyone.”
The effectiveness of the Leave No Footprints strategy was first felt in April 2021 when the company achieved carbon-neutral status.
The next big step in SportsShoes.com’s sustainability journey was exploring carbon offsetting, starting with emissions from heating, lighting and powering the business since it was founded and the previous two years of national and international distribution activities.
To offset these emissions, the company collaborated with Yorkshire-based woodland regenerative project ‘Make it Wild’, which is replanting native woodlands that are guaranteed to grow for at least 30 years.
The company cares about the impact of the products it sells and how they are produced, so in 2021 SportsShoes.com launched its first sustainable store. This sees the retailer working with brand partners to identify products that have a lower environmental impact, SportsShoes.com’s store features apparel and footwear that is environmentally conscious.
Ape owner, Mark Shayler, comments: “Sometimes you work with a company which genuinely cares. SportsShoes.com is one such company. Not content with calculating and removing their emissions for 2020 and 2021, they have taken responsibility for a big chunk of their supply chain’s emissions too. Now with this roll-back of emissions for the last 40 years they are leading in the sector; and there’s more to come. That’s environmental leadership right there.”