Mountain pass high in the Dolomites

Product Climate Footprints

Estimating Climate Footprints For Products

We have chosen to publish CO2e estimates for the production of our products to show where the main areas of impact lie in their value-chains. We believe that though the figures themselves are interesting, the real value in sharing them is to help both consumers and ourselves be better informed when making decisions.

Our estimates are expressed in Kilograms of CO2e  and based on an assessment approach often referred to as ‘cradle-to-gate’. This means that our calculations consider all steps of the product life-cycle from the creation and processing of raw materials through to distribution to our warehouses in Europe.

 

About Carbon Equivalents ( CO2e)

The climate impact of our products is expressed in kilograms of CO2e or Carbon Dioxide Equivalents. This measure is used by the UNFCCC and The European Commission and converts the varying effects of different gases into the equivalent amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) it would take to create the same greenhouse effect. This single measure allows like-for-like comparison of products or services when considering their impact on climate change.

It is important to note that there is more understanding the impact of products and services than looking at CO2e alone, however, it does provide the best starting point and currently the best gauge of likely climate impact.

What is included in our calculations?

The methodology we use to generate CO2e estimates for our products is based on a cradle-to-gate concept using a by-weight calculation, it includes:

Raw Material Processing

We calculate the weight of each base material that goes into producing a product. These may be fabrics, plastics or other materials such as cords or bungees. The origin-to-production shipping, the recycled or non-recycled nature and any further processing (such as moulding of hard plastics) is factored in at this stage. Known emissions-data-by-weight are used to give CO2e figures for each of these component elements prior to production.

Product Assembly

The production of packs involves processes such as sewing and radio-frequency welding which require energy. To estimate this at a product level, this energy requirement is calculated using the product weight to estimate production usage with knowledge of the factories energy source (including renewable or non-renewable).

Product Packaging

Our recyclable packaging bags and components such as hangtags are added into the calculation prior to determining the impact of transportation.

Transportation

Our CO2e estimates for transportation account for getting our products from production facilities to our European warehouses (mostly by sea).

What is not included? and why?

We are continually seeking to improve our understanding of emissions for our products, at the moment we know that our figures do not account for:

'Last Kilometer' Delivery

‘Last kilometer’ delivery is the final step of shipping from our warehouses to our customers. The emissions for this vary significantly depending on the destination location making them a figure best understood in isolation. Given the lightweight nature of our packs, the CO2e estimates for shipping at an individual level are relatively small, but when combined are a significant consideration.

Product End-of-life

True end-of-life solutions for most Apidura packs will ultimately rely on the evolution of technology to become a reality. Emissions estimates indicate that the production of a pack has significantly more impact than any other part of its footprint, so we aim to reduce the necessity to produce (or reproduce) packs unnecessarily. We do this with a built-to-last and designed-for-repair philosophy with our repair programs and Revive, our second life marketplace aimed and pushing out the the true end-of-life of a product for as long as possible.

Recycling of Packaging

All of our packaging is recyclable. Our figures calculated for product CO2e do not include the energy required to recycle this packaging. As with everything we make, we are conscious that once something has been produced, even with recycling, these emission can not be retracted, we are continuously seeking better packaging alternatives and would encourage re-use before recycling.

Production Wastage

We go to significant efforts to minimise wastage during production by optimising how we cut fabric (lay plans) and by choosing to produce in single colourways for the long-term to negate ‘seasonal’ waste and off-cuts. Despite this, some wastage is inevitable and it varies depending on the combination of products we produce in any given production run. Wastage is not usually included in CO2e estimates for products however this is something we are hoping to include going forwards as we believe it is more representative of the climate footprint a product has.

Climate Footprint For

Backcountry Saddle Pack

To form a product CO2e estimate for the Backcountry Saddle Pack (10L), we assess all of the raw materials and components that go into its construction and where they originate from. These figures are combined with those for the energy requirements associated with the assembly of the finished pack. This includes processes such , cutting, R-F welding and sewing. We then calculate the emissions generated from the production of our shipping packaging as well as those involved in freighting the packs from our factories in Asia to our warehouses in Europe and add these to form the total estimate.

The Methodology

Our product carbon footprint calculations are created using The 2030 Calculator from Doconomy which uses known emissions data to build robust industry-average emission factors. The methodology and data integrity and has been vetted and assured by EY (Ernst & Young) and shown to be 95% accurate compared to a bespoke cradle-to-gate product life-cycle analysis.

Visualising Carbon Emissions

The climate impact of a product or action expressed in kilograms of CO2e
is designed to represent the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) it would take to produce
the same greenhouse effect, but what does this look like in reality?

 

The capacity of 11.7 full
sets of Expedition Series
Packs holds 1kg of CO2.

CO2e Volume Visualisation

 

The importance of publishing product climate footprints

We have chosen to publish CO2e estimates to show where the impact of our products lies in their value-chain and why we promote product longevity so heavily. We believe that though the figures themselves are interesting, the real value in sharing them is to help both consumers and ourselves be better informed when making decisions. We hope that in taking this step, we will help to normalise the sharing of product climate footprints across the industry.