Founder of sustainable clothing brand Patagonia, Yvon Chouinard has never been one to involve himself in politics. The rock climber, fly fisher turned entrepreneur has always been an image far from your traditional CEOs, creating the Patagonia brand in 1973 after seeing a need for quality hiking and fishing gear.
Since the beginning the brand has always been very transparent in the fact that it is sustainable and ethical in its making, promoting customers fix their clothes rather than purchase new ones if they were ever to become broken.
“It’s business that has to take the majority of the blame for being the enemy of nature, for destroying native cultures, for taking from the poor and giving to the rich, and for poisoning the earth.” – Yvon Chouinard / Lifegate
Patagonia has worked hard to create the sustainable brand we know and love today and on Wednesday, they announced they are going a step further.
Chouinard’s political silence has changed since President Trump stepped into power and even more so when Trump introduced tax cuts in 2017. These changes in tax have left Patagonia with an extra $10 Million that they will be giving away to help fund grassroots activism, just as they have been doing since 1985.
Patagonia released a statement on Wednesday that shunned the tax cuts that, over a year on, have left them with millions of spare dollars and, they say, “couldn’t have come at a worse time”.
At a time where people are fighting for governments to declare a climate crisis, Trump’s tax bill has allowed for more oil and gas exploration and drilling across 1.5 million acres on the coastal plain of the Alaska National Wildlife Refuge.
“Our government continues to ignore the seriousness and causes of the climate crisis. It is pure evil. We need to double down on renewable energy solutions. We need an agriculture system that supports small family farms and ranches, not one that rewards chemical companies intent on destroying our planet and poisoning our food. And we need to protect our public lands and waters because they are all we have left.” Yvon Chouinard / Patagonia Works