I just heard about Yakima going green for Earth Day this year, and I think it’s great. We’ve worked with Yakima for years, and have been developing that relationship lately, with the addition of our online Yakima Rack Configurator, for example. So I was excited to find their new Web site, yakimapayback.com.
Earth Day comes around but once a year, and it’s a great time to sit back and consider our impact, our “footprint” in this world. I’ve noticed that since Earth Day this year, we’ve seen a rash of “green” marketing. Unlike previous years, however, it doesn’t seem to be fading away very quickly. Imagine a huge holiday based not on consumerism for consumerism’s sake (like, um, that one in December, for example- which I happen to love just to put the record straight). Imagine a holiday based, rather, on ethical consumption. This idea has taken hold pretty deeply, and it makes sense to me. We’re going to eat, live, work, and play… so why not do it with a consciousness of how each activity affects the rest of the world? If you can choose a better product that will not have to be replaced as often, or choose to purchase from a company that gives back to local access issues, why not do it? I guess the only other option is voluntary extinction, and I’m not really on board with that one.
Here at RockCreek, we’ve always been focused on the philosophy of “Leave No Trace,” and it applies just as much to our daily lives as it does to use of the backcountry. So it’s always nice when you can live out your environmental commitments in your home, at work, and at play. One way you can do that is by supporting companies that are conscious of the fact that their business causes environmental harm, and that take that knowledge and use it to make a concerted effort to reduce that harm.
On this front, Patagonia has led the way since the old hard man days before I was born. But more companies are getting on the environmental bandwagon, and while we can’t assume they’re all doing it with the kind of idealism embodied by the Yvon Choinard’s “do no harm” philosophy, I think it’s a good thing that more companies have stood up and acknowledged their impact on the rest of the world. Instead of running from this realization and trying to hide the harmful sides of business, some companies have stepped up to the plate and have begun to look closely at their operations and have begun to actively offset the harm they cause. We should applaud these companies for their guts and for starting down a difficult road.
Here’s what Yakima says about their new Planet Payback program:
At Yakima, we