Material Bank, the Sandow-owned online marketplace for architecture, design, and construction materials has signed on to The Climate Pledge, vowing its business operations will achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040, a milestone 10 years ahead of the goal set by the Paris Agreement.
Spearheaded by Amazon and Global Optimism, The Climate Pledge is a globe-spanning commitment goal that companies and organizations can sign on to as part of the fight against climate change and the effort to reduce carbon emissions. Since it was enacted in 2019, there have been over 375 signatories, including AECOM, Uber, and PepsiCo.
Material Bank supports more than 450 design brands on its digital media platform and allows users to have sample materials sent to them the following day. The sampling process reduces waste within the construction and design industry by allowing architects, designers, and contractors to trial and preview a material in lieu of ordering the product in bulk and then deciding to not use it.
Since its inception in 2019, the service, which also recently acquired media platform Architizer, has been committed to sustainability and climate-oriented operations. Its compact packaging has eliminated the shipping of over 2.6 million packages and its reclamation program, which allows users to return samples, supports a circular economy. Returned materials are reused and sent out again; this initiative has reduced over 200,000 pounds of design materials from landing in landfills. Since 2020 the digital platform has offset more than 2,600 metric tons of greenhouse gasses from its sample shipments.
“We are thrilled to be part of this incredibly important initiative which challenges companies to go beyond the status-quo and act now,” Material Bank Founder & CEO, Adam I. Sandow said in a statement. “The gravity of climate change is something we cannot ignore, and we hope our bold commitment to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2040 will inspire the larger design community to continue to reevaluate and innovate when it comes to environmental impact.”
As a signatory to The Climate Pledge, Material Bank is joining other signatories in agreeing to measure and report on its greenhouse gas emissions. It is also promising to make changes to its business and operations that will contribute to decarbonization; these changes—many of which the Material Bank has already started on—may include implementing renewable energy sources, improving efficiency, or reducing material and waste, with the end goal, of course, being to have net-zero annual emissions by 2040.
In addition to The Climate Pledge, Material Bank has also previously signed on with the Science Based Targets initiative, under which it has committed to reducing its Scope 1 (direct emissions from transportation and industrial processes) and Scope 2 (purchased energy such as heat and electricity) emissions by 38 percent. Last year, the company launched the Carbon Impact Program, which offers digital tools and resources to make specifying sustainable materials easier for architects and designers.