Helping Climate Change Around the World

Patagonia CEO sells his company to help fight climate change


Photo by D. Patel

Patagonia takes used clothing from customers and recycles them for their updated clothing lines.

Andy Ratterree, Viking Voices Co-Editor

According to scientists at The Nature Conservatory, about 97% of climate change is caused by humans. Based on these findings, scientist have declared that climate change has taken a turn for the worse with the average temperature reaching unthinkable heights. 

 Mary Jordan Janeski (12) is actively involved with environmental issues and is the founder of an environmental organization called Greenlife. 

“I think that climate change is a persistent issue. People and corporations have to work together to create change and reverse or at least prevent the effects of climate change. Also, companies contributing to stopping climate change, while might have short-term business decline, will positively contribute to society’s growth and view of the company. As well as taking effective action against damage done to our Earth,” Janeski said.  

In recent years, climate change has been getting worse, according to Starting in 1970, scientists finally agreed that the world was slowly getting warmer.  Since 1950, industry in the world has added over than 50% more carbon dioxide to the Earth’s atmosphere. This is known as the Greenhouse Gas Effect which traps gases like carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), into the atmosphere and raises the temperature around the globe. Some consequences of climate change are melting polar ice caps that make sea levels rise, more ocean acidity, and more frequent extreme weather patterns.  

Most companies today support the fight against climate change. Worldwide brands and companies such as Beyond Meat and Tesla have expressed their support on the matter. Apple has been awarded the most eco-friendly tech company multiple times and all of their stores run off renewable energy. One company has taken it a step further though. Patagonia’s CEO sold his company for $3 billion to support the desperate fight against climate change.  

Symir Nelson (11) believes that now is an important time for company ethics due to numerous ethical issues becoming prevalent.

“Climate change is bad for the environment, so companies working to support stopping climate change will help in the long run and set up a better foundation for future businesses,” Nelson said.  

Patagonia is a major apparel brand that was founded in 1973 by Yvon Chouinard. Starting as a small business out of Ventura, California, Patagonia began selling mountain climbing gear and achieved a B-Label rating, meaning it was a more sustainable brand than some other climbing gear companies at the time. During the 2011 Black Friday season, Patagonia started an advertisement campaign that advertised not to buy their jackets. The advert said, “Don’t Buy This Jacket.” The promotion encouraged people to think about the environment and the effects of consumerism on the world. According to Patagonia manufacturers, the jacket was not eco-friendly and encouraged consumers to buy jackets that were healthier for the Earth.  

In the past month, Chouinard decided to sell his company, which was valued at over $3 billion, and donate the money to a non-profit organization called Holdfast Collective.  

Omar Alchab (12) thinks that the decision by Patagonia to sell their company was bold, however crucial for the greater good.

“The Patagonia CEO selling his company to help climate change is a great step in the right direction. Climate change is something serious that we need to act against. Companies stopping climate change is good for business,” Alchab said.