Nike has teamed up with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Climate CoLab in a project to “bring innovation in materials to the forefront of the climate conversation,” and Nike has committed to reach 100 percent renewable energy in company-owned and operated facilities by 2025.
“We know materials make up about 60 percent of the environmental impact in a pair of Nike shoes,” says Hannah Jones, chief sustainability officer at Nike. “This knowledge has focused us on the need to bring new low-impact performance materials to scale through innovative solutions.”
According to MIT, the apparel industry is expected to produce more than 400 billion square meters of fabric and is estimated to consume nearly 1 billion kWh (kilowatt hours) of electricity every year. Through this collaboration with Nike, the MIT Climate CoLab can foster the conversation around materials and galvanize global interests “to start to tackle this immense challenge,” said Professor Thomas Malone, Principal Investigator and Founder of the MIT Climate CoLab project.
The MIT Climate CoLab Materials Challenge seeks ideas for how to engage industries, designers and consumers in valuing, demanding and adopting low-impact fabrics and textiles.
Nike has also launched the Making App, which it says helps designers and product creators make better decisions about their materials choices. Nike recently updated the app to highlight the climate-related impact of materials choices alongside chemistry, waste and water.