Nike - Smart Energy Decisions

GHG Emissions  -  August 31, 2021

Nike Explores the Use of Carbon-Negative Biomaterial

Nike announced a new partnership to explore the use of a carbon-negative biomaterial in its products.

The sportswear brand will work with Newlight Technologies on the further development of AirCarbon, which is produced by microorganisms from the ocean. The technology is already used as a substitute to plastic and leather, particularly in the production of eyewear, wallets, and bags.

“AirCarbon offers an opportunity to further reduce our impact on the planet,” Noel Kinder, chief sustainability officer at NIKE, Inc., said in a statement. “Materials account for 70 percent of Nike's total carbon footprint, and we're accelerating our efforts and exploring new opportunities in this space because, in the race against climate change, we can't wait for solutions, we have to work together to create them.”

AirCarbon is an energy storage material generated by microorganisms that consume greenhouse gas. The resulting polyhydroxybutyrate (or PHB) is approximately 40% oxygen from the air and 60% carbon by weight.

Through its partnership with Newlight, Nike will use the material in the production of its consumer goods, as it can be melted into a variety of forms like fiber, sheet, and solid shapes. SCS Global Services previously certified AirCarbon as carbon-negative, meaning it reduces the carbon in the atmosphere through its production.

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