Register for an account


Enter your name and email address below.

Your email address is used to log in and will not be shared or sold. Read our privacy policy.


Website access code

Enter your access code into the form field below.

If you are a Zinio, Nook, Kindle, Apple, or Google Play subscriber, you can enter your website access code to gain subscriber access. Your website access code is located in the upper right corner of the Table of Contents page of your digital edition.


Next Year's Nike: Amazon-Friendly Air Jordans

80beatsBy Aline ReynoldsJuly 24, 2009 10:37 PM


Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news

Nike, the world's largest maker of athletic shoes, said yesterday it is adopting a policy that prohibits the use of leather from cattle raised in Brazil's Amazon rainforest. The announcement came after a Greenpeace statement released about a month ago citing cattle farming as the main driver as deforestation in the region, and a significant contributor to global warming, as ranchers clear vast stretches of land for grazing. The company

established a formal Amazon leather policy and

will give its leather suppliers until the first day of next July to

"create an ongoing, traceable and transparent system to provide credible assurances that leather used for Nike products is from cattle raised outside of the Amazon Biome" [AP].

Nike's Web site says that it has "a high degree of certainty" that it doesn't currently use leather sourced from Amazonia. Still, the company wants to make sure this is the case due to the large environmental impact of cattle farming in that region. Therefore, if leather suppliers fail to meet the July 1 deadline for a traceable system,

the company may expand the region from which it won’t source leather to include non-forested areas in all nine Brazilian states that contain parts of the Amazon [Bloomberg].

Greenpeace was pleased with the company's decision. “Nike has recognized that trampling over the Amazon rainforest to produce leather for its trainers is an unacceptable way of doing business,” said Sarah Shoraka [of Greenpeace]. “Preparing land for cattle ranching is now the single biggest cause of deforestation in the world and a major driver of climate change"

[Bloomberg]. According to Greenpeace, rearing cattle in the Amazon causes 14 percent of the deforestation each year around the globe, and tropical logging emits about 17 percent of the gases held responsible for climate change.

Related Content: 80beats: Chopping Down the Amazon Causes a Short-Term Boom, Long-Term Bust 80beats: The Latest Threat to the Amazon Rainforest: Hackers 80beats: As Amazon Rainforest Destruction Continues, Brazil Pledges Drastic Action

Image: flickr / Valerio Pillar

    3 Free Articles Left

    Want it all? Get unlimited access when you subscribe.


    Already a subscriber? Register or Log In

    Want unlimited access?

    Subscribe today and save 70%


    Already a subscriber? Register or Log In