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GoLite Set to Reach ‘Carbon Neutral’ Status

GoLiteCarbonFootprintGoLite, a manufacturer of high-performance apparel and outdoor gear, has met three goals set in 2006 a year ahead of schedule, according to the company’s 2009 sustainability report. These include using a majority (67 percent) of environmentally-preferred materials in its products by mass, achieving 100 percent compliance with their factory fair labor Code of Conduct, and using zero restricted or banned substances in any product.

The company also expects to meet two other goals set in 2006 in the coming months. These include achieving a 30 percent absolute greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) reduction (not including offsets) based on a 2008 baseline through targeted emissions reductions strategies, despite doubling of sales. The company also expects to achieve “carbon neutral” status thanks to reduction efforts in addition to carbon offsets.

With a 30 percent absolute reduction between 2008 and 2010, the company expects its materials carbon intensity to decrease to 8 Mtons GHG emissions per Mton of product produced in 2010, from about 11 Mtons of GHG emissions in 2008.

The company is working toward achieving its final goal for a 100 percent zero waste headquarters. In 2009, more than 94 percent of the company’s waste was either recycled or composted.

The report finds that GoLite’s single largest climate impact (62 percent of total) comes from the production of materials in their products, which is driving the company’s focus on product impact mitigation.

The high-performance gear manufacturer began moving towards full conversion of its product line to environmentally-preferred materials for its Spring 2010 line when it replaced virgin, petro-chemical based materials in 100 percent of its main pack fabrics, travel luggage, and all sleeping bag collections with Tier 1 recycled nylons and polyesters. The nylon and polyester materials offer up to 70 and 80 percent reduction in energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, respectively, while performing on-par with their conventional alternatives, according to the company.

GoLite is striving to eliminate or mitigate 100 percent of its environmental footprint and to be a model company in how they treat their people and community.

As a result, the company has set several environmental goals for 2015, which includes using 100 percent (by mass) environmentally-preferred materials, achieving a 25 percent reduction in materials-based carbon intensity, having a zero-waste, paperless headquarters powered 100 percent by renewable energy and 100 percent employee participation in its Alternative Transportation Program. The company also will continue to be 100 percent “climate neutral” through GHG reduction strategies and carbon offsets.

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