A critical aspect of a product’s “efficiency” involves not just what it does, but also where it comes from and where it goes after its useful life. Brooks has taken an innovative step to improve the life-cycle efficiency of its running shoes with its biodegradable BioMoGo cushioning material.
BioMoGo is a cushioning material for the midsoles of running shoes, and Brooks promises it provides even better performance than traditional EVA foam – with an important twist: BioMoGo is biodegradable. Independent testing has shown the BioMoGo material degrades up to 50 times faster than EVA in the anaerobic environment of a landfill.
The material is manufactured with a non-toxic additive that remains inert during normal use (so your shoes won’t fall apart on your feet), but the additive drastically accelerates degradation when buried in a landfill. Whereas EVA takes an estimated 1,000 years to decompose, Brooks states that BioMoGo biodegrades in just 20 years.
Admittedly, running shoe waste isn’t one of today’s biggest environmental challenges. But the numbers are still pretty substantial: Brooks projects a reduction of 30 million pounds of landfill waste over the next two decades just by using BioMoGo in its own shoes. And Brooks is choosing to make its manufacturing process public, to encourage its use as an “open-source” technology. By doing so, Brooks is serving as a springboard to improve the efficiency of a wide range of consumer products.
(via Brooks Sports, Inc.)