Thursday, July 11, 2013

Eco Friendly?

I was looking for new shoes recently, something I don't really enjoy.  I just want an affordable, quality shoe that lasts forever so I don't have to buy any more.  I know that's unachievable, but it's still what I'd prefer.  So I look at a basic shoe, the Adidas Samba.  Nothing fancy, just a shoe.  It's been good enough for people since the 80's, it's good enough for me.  Only now it isn't.

It seems a few years ago Adidas, and some other companies, starting switching over to a product they call "eco-friendly leather".  That name is a lie, it's neither leather nor eco friendly.  It's plastic.  A petro chemical.  It looks cheap, doesn't breathe and according to reviews it squeaks like like a bunny being hunted on by my wife's cat.  It's a cost saving measure played off as a green move.  That can happen because at some point the popular green movement decided leather was bad for the environment.

And how did this idea happen?  How did the green movement embrace plastic as an ecologically friendly alternative to natural materials?  Leather is a renewable resource (especially the ones that are vegetable cured) and biodegradable at the end of it's service life, which can be quite long.  Plastic is made out of oil byproducts in a factory that pollutes the land and water and it never degrades as it sits in landfills.  It's a movement that believes in something despite of facts to the contrary.

It shouldn't surprise me, as I've written before about people who support ideologies that don't embrace scientific thought or facts about the world around them.  I'm just annoyed I can't buy a pair of plain leather tennis shoes to replace the ones I've had for more than 10 years.

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