Posts Tagged ‘climate change’

Take the Climate Counts i2 Challenge

Climate Counts is a non-profit campaign that scores companies annually on the basis of their voluntary action to reverse climate change. The Climate Counts scorecard helps people vote with their dollars by making climate-conscious purchasing and investing choices that drive the world’s most well-known companies to take the issue of climate change seriously.

Timberland is proud to be a member of the Climate Counts Industry Innovators program (i2) — an initiative which has helped to make the Climate Counts scorecard available and useful to many more companies.  Along with other i2 companies (Amtrak, Ben & Jerry’s, Clif Bar, REI and Shaklee), Timberland supports the Climate Counts mission of educating consumers while holding our brand and our business to the highest standard of climate leadership.  In fact, Timberland received the highest score in the apparel / accessories category (86 points out of 100) from Climate Counts for our commitment to fighting global warming!

Now it’s your turn to show your support for i2 companies and climate consciousness by taking the Climate Counts i2 Challenge:

  • Snap a photo of yourself, supporting one of the i2 companies.  The photo could be you wearing Timberland Earthkeepers boots, riding on the Amtrak, eating Ben & Jerry’s … you get the idea.
  • Email the photo with a brief description to Climate Counts ( with “Climate Counts i2 Challenge” in the subject line.
  • Don’t be late: all photo submissions must be received by Tuesday, May 1.

All photos will be compiled and added to the Climate Counts Facebook page and blog; the coolest photo will win a $50 gift card to the i2 company of your choice!

You can read more about Climate Counts and the i2 program on their website.  To learn more about the ways in which Timberland is working to reduce its climate impact, check out our Responsibility site.

Winter in New England: Don’t like the weather? Wait five minutes.

Hopefully you were like me and had a wonderful holidays and a happy New Year’s. With kids who now can understand the concept of presents, a heavy-set man in a red suit and reindeer, this year was busier than ever. We spent our holiday time in Southern Vermont aka Ski Town Central, where everything centers around skiing or snowboarding with a healthy dose of maple syrup. Unfortunately, Mother Nature reminded us how fickle she can be. We experienced 20 degree temperature swings on a daily basis, which results in snow (25°F) then no snow (45°F) then harsh wind (9°F) then rain (35°F). It truly was like that old New England adage, “Don’t like the weather? Wait five minutes.”

Of course, my entire family was bummed with the lack of snow, but made the most of it. The bigger, scarier concern was the impact these fluctuating temperatures had on local snow-related businesses. The region is still recovering from the impact of Tropical Storm Irene which brought torrential floods. Across the entire country, ski resorts and snow towns are all crying “Uncle” with the lack of snow. It really hit home when people decide to go golfing at the local links rather than traveling to the ski hill. On my personal tally, I noticed that I had double or triple the number of days surfing as I did snowboarding so far this season. posted this picture that shows the difference in weather patterns between January 2011 and January 2012. It’s pretty eye-opening. The only silver lining that I can see from this sad situation is that I overheard more than one conversation in Ski Town Central about how “global warming is really real.” It appears that these rapidly fluctuating temperatures, which impacted holiday spirit, recreational fun and the economy opened a few eyes to some of our very real climate concerns.

From our family’s perspective, the snow conditions may have been horrid, but it was our daughter’s first time on a snowboard so she didn’t mind the fluctuating temperature as long as there was a little patch of white and hot cocoa at the end of the day.

Convening in the Name of Climate Change

No better place to be this week if you’re an Earthkeeper than New York City:

- Climate Week NYC is underway, bringing together business, government and NGO leaders to discuss climate action and the need to create a public/private response to climate change. To learn more about the Climate Week NYC events and speakers, visit their website. And visit our friends over at for complete Climate Week coverage, videos and environmental opinion pieces (including one from our CEO, Jeff Swartz).

- At the Clinton Global Initiative(CGI), influencers and opinion leaders from around the world are gathered to turn ideas into action to create practical solutions to some of our world’s most pressing issues — including those focused on energy and the environment. In support of the action-oriented mission of CGI, participants must make specific and measurable commitments to action; on Timberland’s behalf, CEO Jeff Swartz spoke at CGI today and committed to expanding Timberland’s reforestation programs in China’s Horqin Desert and in Haiti.

We’ll be featuring on-the-ground video coverage from CGI here on the Earthkeepers blog starting tomorrow.

Ethical Corporation Honors Sustainable Businesses

At the Ethical Corporation’s Responsible Business Summit held earlier this month, 20 organizations and individuals were honored for their commitment to innovative practices in corporate responsibility.

Timberland was proud to be among the honorees, recognized for our Don’t Tell Us It Can’t Be Done campaign which encouraged consumers to voice their support for world leaders attending COP15 to set meaningful climate standards. While COP 15 didn’t produce the outcomes we were all hoping for, our campaign succeeded as a means of actively engaging consumers in the climate change issue – powerful progress, in our book.

Other companies doing good things and earning recognition as 2010 Responsible Business Summit award winners include:

PepsiCo, for their direct seeding of rice technology – an innovation that has resulted in a savings of 5.5 billion liters of water in India (among the largest rice growers in the world) and has helped Pepsi achieve “positive water balance” – meaning that they are actually giving back more water than their business consumes.

Continental Clothing, for their EarthPositive® Apparel. This organically and ethically-made product line was launched in 2008 and incorporates best practices to reduce the social and environmental damage normally associated with cotton farming and textile production. The line is manufactured solely using sustainable energy generated from wind power.

Produce World for their innovative approach to sustainability reporting, which includes a web portal which gives stakeholders access to unedited, real-time data about the company’s performance (including carbon and water intensity, accident frequency and waste management) on a site by site, month by month basis against each of the company’s social and environmental KPIs.

We find Ethical Corp’s awards particularly endearing because they include a “Greenwasher of the Year” award to recognize an organization (based on judges’ choice, not entries) that “continues to do considerable environmental damage whilst professing to be sustainable.”  Sometimes recognizing the bad is as important as recognizing the good.

For a complete list of this year’s Responsible Business Summit honorees and their award-winning initiatives, visit

Let’s Talk: How to ‘Mainstream’ the Climate Change Discussion?

Since 2008, Timberland has hosted quarterly calls with a diverse set of stakeholders to support our long-term corporate CSR strategy. This level of transparency and accountability helps Timberland elevate a dialogue on material issues for our industry while providing us critical feedback as we chart our path to become a more sustainable organization.  Won’t you join us for the next quarterly call?

Date:  Thursday April 8, 2010

Time:  12:30 to 2:00 PM EST

Topic:  Discuss the challenges of how to make climate change resonate in a mainstream, retail space and how to scale consumer behavior change.

Timberland’s Jeff Swartz
Gary Hirshberg of Stonyfield Farm

Please register for the event by emailing You’ll receive a response within 24 hours that confirms successful registration.

Be sure to sign up by April 5 to receive additional information about the call and call-in details! These materials will be sent the week of the call.

The results of this and other calls are posted on our reporting web page. This online stakeholder platform will provide a continuation of the discussion through stakeholder comments and discussion after the call.


Check out our latest video dispatch on youth activism at COP15!

Covering Copenhagen

All eyes will be on the Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen starting next week — and we’re pleased to offer real-time, daily coverage of the conference happenings here on Earthkeepers .  Introducing our Copenhagen reporting team:

Olivia Zaleski

OLIVIA ZALESKI is a journalist focused on environmentalism as it relates to business, corporate best practice and executive thinking. As the regular "green correspondent" for , Olivia can be found hosting CNN and Fortune Magazine’s Emmy-nominated series, "Business of Green ,” as well as hosting "Home Work ," the popular green do-it-yourself series for Money Magazine.  In addition, Olivia reports for Hearst Magazine’s "The Daily Green" and appears regularly as, ABC’s "Good Morning America Now " green expert. She has also contributed her commentary and advice to programs like Discovery Channel’s TreehuggerTV, PlumTV, the CW and nationally syndicated morning news program The Daily Buzz. Follow Olivia’s twitter account here or check in daily to the Earthkeepers blog for the latest from COP15.

Gabriel London

GABRIEL LONDON is a documentary filmmaker and writer.  As the founder of the documentary film production company, Found Object Films , Gabriel has produced and directed films that bring overlooked stories to a national audience, dealing with issues ranging from the death penalty to climate change. In the process, he has used his work to participate in advocacy campaigns, work for which he was awarded a Soros Criminal Justice Award . His films have been broadcast nationally on networks ranging from MTV to SpikeTV and as part of film festivals including IDFA, Urbanworld Film Festival, and Live Earth.

For the next two weeks, Olivia and Gabriel will be sharing the view from Copenhagen through videos and blog posts, interviews with key leaders attending the conference and coverage of key events.  (For Copenhagen coverage in 140 characters or less, you can also follow Olivia on Twitter .)

Saving the world in 14 days is a daunting challenge … and we’re hopeful that leaders gathering in Copenhagen are up for it.  If you haven’t already joined our campaign to encourage climate action at Copenhagen, do it now .

Then, come on back to Earthkeepers to follow along as Copenhagen unfolds.

Prime Time Earthkeeping

“We’re not policy makers, we’re not scientists, we’re not government. But we’re active participants in trying to build a solution so there’s an outdoors for your kids and for mine.”

- Timberland President & CEO Jeff Swartz talks climate change, consumer engagement and the role of business in changing the world on FOX Business:

Climate Change, Common Sense and Copenhagen

Channel 4 News in the UK featured the following clip yesterday focused on the flurry of activity taking place in advance of the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference — including fevered lobbyists, costumed activists, public uncertainty and a divided business community.  Timberland’s President and CEO Jeff Swartz is featured — not as a lobbyist or activist, but as a voice calling for "common sense to prevail:"

Will you be watching at the plate glass window to see if COP15 gets the final question right?  Share your thoughts with us here .

The Anatomy of a Human Crisis

We all understand climate change to be a critical concern and an issue worth attention and effort; a comprehensive study issued by the Global Humanitarian Forum(GHF) today supports the notion in no uncertain terms:

  • Climate change today accounts for over 300,000 deaths throughout the world each year.  By 2030, the annual death toll from climate change will reach half a million people a year.
  • Economic losses due to climate change are estimated to be more than $125 billion per year – expected to reach almost $340 billion annually by 2030.
  • A majority of the world’s population doesn’t have the capacity to cope with climate change without suffering a potentially irreversible loss of wellbeing and risk of loss of life.  The populations most gravely at risk are over half a billion people in some of the world’s poorest and under-developed areas.

Is there any light at the end of this grim tunnel?  The call to action issued along with the GHF study is for world leaders at the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen to take notice and take action, swiftly and collectively.

“Climate change … is a gross injustice – poor people in developing countries bear over 90% of the burden … yet are least responsible for creating the problem. Despite this, funding from rich countries to help the poor and vulnerable adapt to climate change is not even 1% of what is needed. This glaring injustice must be addressed at Copenhagen in December.”

Barbara Stocking, chief executive of Oxfam GB
and Global Humanitarian Forum Board Member.

Thoughts about the report?  Share them here.