Review: Timberland 6 Inch Zip Earthkeepers Boot

UPDATE! I’ve posted new photos of this same pair of boots (now three years old) along with a comparison between a few other boots on my product/gear blog here.


I wrote about these boots about a month ago and ended up going ahead and purchasing them. I’ve had this pair for a little over three weeks, and have worn them quite a bit. Right out of the box they are comfortable, and look great. They initially have no creases, however the first time you bend your foot, they will appear. They have an English look, with contrast stitching that is nice. The zippers themselves work well and are of high quality. The zipper function, for getting your foot in is a bit harder than I thought it would be, but I had initially tied the laces too tight. Once loosened up a bit they were much easier to slip into/out of, which is great since the act of lacing up boots is usually a boots worst feature.




I haven’t seen any pictures of these boots, besides what Timberland had to offer, so I’ve taken these in my backyard, to show that they look like when slightly worn. I also inspected them carefully and the workmanship is top notch. Purchase.


Sharing Sustainable Designs – Open Source Innovation

Mary Tripsas, an associate professor in the entrepreneurial management unit at the Harvard Business School, recently wrote an article featured in The New York Times titled Everybody in the Pool of Green Innovation. The piece is about large companies working together on green innovations. It sounds like a great idea, and a way for companies to work together on common goals, when patents are taken on idea’s that aren’t particularly profitable, but help conserve energy or reduce pollution. The big names involved in the Eco-Patent Commons are Bosch, Dow, DuPont, Fuji-Xerox, IBM, Nokia, Pitney Bowes, Ricoh, Sony, Taisei and Xerox.

  Creative Commons’s Green Xchange is another group, whose goal is to add transparency to the sustainability to the supply chain. This is being supported by Best Buy and Nike.

  This idea works great for large companies, however, there still appears to be a need to focus students on designing for a sustainable future. Innovate For Tomorrow is my proposed solution, however, without financing I’m having a bit of trouble getting it off the ground (the php development to enable the core features is the main issue).

Timberland Men’s Earthkeepers 6 Inch Zip Boot

Update! I’ve now reviewed these boots, and have posted my own pictures of them. Check it out the new post here.
Mens Earthkeepers 6 Inch Zip Boot in Burnished Tan
Timberland’s 2009 Earthkeepers line is looking good this year. My favorite new addition is the 6 Inch Zip Boot in Burnished Tan as seen above. The Earthkeepers collection is where Timberland experiments with more eco-friendly boots and clothing. This boot’s leather is sourced “from a tannery that received a silver rating for its reduced energy use, reduced waste and quality water treatment.” The lining is a organic cotton and recycled PET mesh fabric, the laces are organic cotton, and the outsole is 42% recycled rubber.

  Also in their fall collection is a nice looking Rugby Trapper Hat and a Rugby Scarf. Both are made of 60% recycled PET and 40% organic cotton.
Timberland Rugby Trapper Hat
Timberland Rugby Scarf

  While these are good first steps, there is still plenty of room for improvement. For example there is still no system in place to take care of the boots once worn out, so this is the last stop for their recycled components before they end up in a landfill. Also for future products, blends of cottons and plastics shouldn’t be used as this prevents the fabrics from easily being recycled or composted.

Bonobos Pants

Just bought a pair of Bonobos Clean Slates pants. I’d been considering this for about three months, but was unsure if the pants would be worth their $118 price tag (down to $100 with 15% coupon nicepants15off). I have yet to receive them, but I will update the post once I try them on.

Bonobos Clean Slates
Just bought a pair of Bonobos Clean Slates pants. I’d been considering this for about three months, but was unsure if the pants would be worth their $118 price tag (down to $100 with 15% coupon nicepants15off). I have yet to receive them, but I will update the post once I try them on.

  They are made in the USA of 100% organic cotton, which helps reduce the environmental impact of cotton farming. states that “Cotton is mostly grown in monoculture and is a very pesticide-intensive crop. Although it is only grown on 2.5% of the world’s agricultural land, it consumes 16% of all the insecticides used worldwide.”

  Hopefully more companies will take Bonobos lead, by creating nice looking organic clothing, and perhaps with a little competition the price will come down a little bit. The organic cotton button down shirt market also seems like an area that could see some growth in the future, with non-organic cotton shirts already fetching $80.

Lexus’s Sustainability Statement

Lexus’s Sustainability Statement is an outline of the measures that have been taken to create a more sustainable manufacturing and distribution system. They also mention TSOP as quoted below:

Company engineers developed a plastic called TSOP that does not deteriorate. Used in the bumpers, interior panels, trim and parts of the dash and console, it can be recycled indefinitely rather than discarded as waste after a single use. It is such a significant breakthrough that the formula has been made available to every car manufacturer.

This sounds great except that, as far as I know, old cars aren’t disassembled before being crushed and placed in land fills (cash for clunkers).  Inherently this means that there is no real benefit to this plastic other than the fact that it will last far longer than it’s intended use (something almost all plastics do).

Until a car manufacturer accepts back old vehicles, such breakthroughs on recyclable materials are of no use.  I think that Toyota should create a program in which they test the feasibility of disassembling cars for reusable materials, similar to Apple’s policy outlined below:

Apple has expanded its successful recycling program, offering free computer take back and recycling with the purchase of a new Mac. US customers who buy a new Mac through the Apple Store or Apple’s retail stores will receive free shipping and environmentally friendly disposal of their old computer.

I think a program like this would really turn TSOP into a breakthrough in recycling – or upcycling – and more cars would end up being designed with their end life in mind. Hopefully this is what Lexus is planning, and their first step is to create recyclable components, however I have yet to find anything regarding recycling cars.