Everyone is claiming that we need to live a more sustainable life, but what exactly does that mean? It is a term that is used a lot, but basically what it means is to go about living our lives in a way that reduces our impact on the planet. There are many ways in which you can do that.
Here at Panamuna Project we are committed to producing our gear in the most sustainable way. We achieve this by:
Using 100% organic cotton in our tees and singlets – this cotton is grown without the use of harmful chemicals. This means that it is 100% pesticide and insecticide free, with only the use of natural fertilisers to enrich the soil. This helps to improve the quality of the land, prevent water contamination and to conserve biodiversity. It also is much better for your skin, our largest organ, which is constantly in contact with the fabric. Furthermore, the cotton sourced for our t-shirts is grown in monsoon regions, reducing the need for heavy-duty irrigation of the crop.
Our designs are printed locally using water based inks – printing our t-shirts locally using eco-friendly methods enables us to think global but to also support local industry in our region, making a difference to small business owners. The inks used do not contain any PVC or phthalates, and it only requires water for the cleaning of the silk screens after use, rather than heavy solvents. There are also no ozone-depleting chemicals such as CFC’s and HCFC’s contained in the ink, and they are free from lead, heavy metals or any toxic chemicals whatsoever.
All packaging is biodegradable – we have made a conscious decision to make any packaging we use plastic free. The habit of our society to resort to single use plastics is the main danger to the astonishing marine life that inhabits our oceans. It is believed that a staggering 46,000 pieces of plastic can be found in every square kilometre of ocean, which leads to the death of hundreds of thousands of marine creatures and sea birds every year! Our love of the ocean here at Panamuna is so deep that we in no way wanted to contribute further to this issue. We package our gear in paper that is 100% recycled and we wrap each individual item by hand.
T-shirts are manufactured using renewable energy - the primary energy source that is used to produce our gear is wind, and when the wind turbines do not produce enough electricity it is supplemented with solar power. It goes without saying that these forms of renewable electricity would considerably cut down on the emission of fossil fuels, making the production of these t-shirts almost carbon neutral.
Participating in community events – Panamuna Project prides itself on being a community minded business. We regularly participate in beach clean ups at a variety of locations and, when given the opportunity, we support local surf competitions for amateurs and semi-professional surfers. We also donate a portion of our proceeds to like-minded organisations.
Inspiring individuals to adopt an ocean friendly lifestyle – through our social media channels and website we promote a lifestyle that is conscious of the impact we have on the oceans. We regularly post ideas to encourage people to think about the way they interact with the environment around them and we highlight the need for more action, action that can easily be achieved by a single individual.
The reason that we have decided to adopt a sustainable approach to the manufacturing and production of our gear is simple – we have a deep connection with the ocean and wanted to do what we could to initiate positive change that results in its protection. We also realised that not enough was being done to change the industry. When we think about pollution we envisage coal power plants, exhaust fumes and copious amounts of debris in our waterways. We don’t think twice about the clean t-shirt that is on our back. However, as it stands, the manufacturing industry is once of the worst polluters, coming a close second to the petroleum industry. We realised that it didn’t have to be like this.
We spent many long hours researching ways to establish Panamuna Project as a company that has a social and environmental conscience. We pride ourselves on our ability to inform others of social and environmental issues facing the industry, and we assist the wider community to become more conscious consumers. We are continually innovating our gear and looking for ways to be even more sustainable, in an effort to reduce our carbon footprint and build a better world.