A letter from our founder, Yvon Chouinard

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Dear 1% for the Planet community,

I’ve never celebrated Earth Day. I’ve always felt that all of that attention on just one day distracts us from the need to be taking action for the planet every day. 

But these are extraordinary times. This pandemic is showing us clearly that if we put off what needs to be done, it ends up coming back to bite us. We’ve known for a long time that there would be a global pandemic, and we’ve done nothing. We’ve known for decades about global warming, and we’ve done nothing. We’ve got to choose to act.

As members and nonprofit partners of 1% for the Planet, you have made that choice. And during this challenging time, it’s not an easy one. But it’s the right one. When Patagonia has faced hard times before, as we are now, the absolute last thing that we would give up is our 1%. It’s a cost of doing business on this planet. It’s not philanthropy—it’s an absolute necessity for us living on this planet. It’s the opposite of doing nothing. 

It’s also so important that we stay in this together. One lesson that I’ve learned, and that this pandemic is certainly teaching us, is that we’re not in isolation. The problems we’re facing now have to be solved on a global basis, and can only be solved by people working together and staying tough together—like all of you in the 1% for the Planet community.  

So, hang in there, stay the course, and remember that this community matters during these extraordinary times and at all times. 

My thanks to all of you for your commitment. It means a lot.

—Yvon

Founder of Patagonia & 1% for the Planet

 

P.S. Remember, vote the assholes out—all of those politicians who don't believe we should do anything about climate change. Vote for the planet and against those who would do nothing. We have the power and now is the time to use it.  

 


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In 2002, Yvon Chouinard founded 1% for the Planet and Patagonia became the first business to commit 1% of annual sales to the environment. Today, the 1% for the Planet network consists of over 3,000 businesses and individuals that contribute to environmental nonprofits in over 90 countries. To date, 1% for the Planet has directed over $250 million to these grassroots organizations working toward a better world.

 

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