For the most part, we’re all doing our job, trying to help the environment in simple ways. Some people choose to go vegan, while others may choose to switch to plastic straws. A big “step” in the right direction, can be found within Veja, a shoe company that has become increasingly popular due to its sustainability and fair trade practices.
Sebastien Kopp, the cofounder of Veja, told WIRED in an interview that “a running shoe has to have flexibility, strength, and memory; plastic is the best and cheapest material to do that.” Veja has created a new running shoe. This shoe is made with a material called TPU, EVA, and PET which stands for thermoplastic polyurethane, ethylene vinyl acetate, and polyethylene terephthalate. The name of this new shoe is appropriately called the Condor. It retails for $150, and is officially Veja’s first performance runner. Although this shoe claims to be the first ever “post-petroleum” running shoe, critics disagree.
Getting down to numbers, the Condor contains about 53 percent bio-based and recycled material. Rubber and virgin plastic make up the other 47 percent. Kopp is confident in his ratio, considering the shoe was made to be sustainable, while also maintaining a decent lifespan. You cannot compromise the life of the shoe, in order for it to be one hundred percent sustainable. In many studies done, too much plastic made the shoe unsustainable. On the other hand, too little of plastic made the shoe wear out after just a few runs.
According to Arnaud Dabir, a project manager at Veja, the shoes needed to be precisely created, all the way down to exact measurements. A slight adjustment in the formula for a regular running shoe is what made the Condor so successful. It was never meant to withstand wear like Nike’s, Adidas’ or Reebok’s, to name a few. The mixture resulted in the shoe being comprised of 31 percent rice husk, which makes the sole firm but still light enough, and 39 percent synthetic rubber. The end result is a shoe that is sustainable, while keeping a good lifespan. Kopp states that the only way in trying to achieve sustainability is to be honest about the work process and to keep trying to improve. The only way to keep moving forward, is to move forward. Trial and error seems to be the main way that sustainable companies like Veja, and many others strive to be.
With shoes becoming more sustainable, cars becoming more electric, and people all over the US trying to make the environment a better place, lots of good things can come from that. Now all we need to do is get rid of road rage so car accidents don’t happen as often. When they do though, especially in Wisconsin, which is ranked #29 for most dangerous regarding car accidents, you better make sure you’re protected. The Milwaukee Car Accident Attorney at Welcenbach Law can help. And yes, electric cars can even get in accidents. But driving one would help reduce emissions flooding the air. Find your niche, and do your part to help the environment, even if it’s buying the Condors.