Have you thought about a sustainable watch?
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In this week’s sustainability tip, we take a look at watches, not something that you may think of as having an impact.
So, today, you can find out all about the history and impact of watches and all about the ‘sustainable watch’!
From Stones to the sustainable watch
The history of timekeeping stretches back thousands of years to the Neolithic era when ancient peoples erected standing stones to mark the passing of time.
These standing stones, also known as megaliths, served as lunar calendars and were used to track the phases of the moon.
As civilizations developed, so too did the methods and technologies used for timekeeping.
The ancient Egyptians developed sundials, which used the position of the sun to tell time.
After this, the ancient Greeks and Romans created water clocks and hourglasses.
In the Middle Ages, mechanical clockwork devices were invented, which greatly improved the accuracy of timekeeping.
These early clocks were large, heavy, and often housed in towers or cathedrals, where they could be heard by the entire community.
During the Industrial Revolution, the mass production of clock and watch parts allowed for the creation of smaller, more accurate timepieces.
The invention of the quartz crystal oscillator in the 20th century further improved the accuracy of timekeeping.
This led to the development of quartz watches, which are still widely used today.
As with any industrialisation and scaling of production, watches now come with a significant environmental impact.
Not every watch is an eco-watch
The environmental impact of watches is a growing concern in the industry.
This is because traditional watch manufacturers often rely on materials and production processes that are harmful to the planet.
The extraction of precious metals such as gold and silver, which are commonly used in watchmaking, can have a significant environmental impact.
Mining for metals harms the environment on many, many levels.
Additionally, the manufacturing process for watches is energy intensive and generates a significant amount of waste and pollution.
Furthermore, many modern watches rely on battery power.
These batteries can create significant electronic waste, if not disposed of properly.
On top of this, batteries contain toxic chemicals that can leak into the soil or water, causing harm to the environment.
Also, there is a high consumption of resources and energy that goes into the manufacturing of these batteries.
Not only that, but research shows that an incredible 15 billion batteries are thrown away each year worldwide.
The environmental impact of watches should not be underestimated.
Moreover, it’s important to consider these impacts when making choices about what watches to purchase and how to dispose of them.
How to make your watch sustainable
When considering a sustainable watch purchase, there are several factors to keep in mind.
Materials, manufacturing processes, durability, disposal options, repair options, and supporting companies with a sustainable approach all play important roles.
To start with, it is important to look for watches made with eco-friendly materials such as bamboo or recycled plastic and metal.
This means that the materials have a lower environmental impact compared to traditional materials like virgin metal and leather.
As for the manufacturing process, look for watches that were produced with minimal waste.
You can also look at ones using renewable energy sources.
This information is available with a little research on the company.
As well as this, you can look for certifications like Fair Trade or Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and Global Recycle Standard (GRS) for materials.
Additionally, durability is an important factor, watches that last longer can significantly reduce the environmental impact in the long run.
This is much better when compared to having to replace a watch frequently.
It is also crucial to consider the disposal and lifecycle of the watch.
Being aware of the recycling programs offered by the company and options for end-of-life products.
In this way you can avoid contributing to electronic waste.
You can also consider second-hand.
Many watches are well made and the second-hand market is huge.
It means that if you purchase second hand there is no manufacturing/packaging footprint.
Lastly, as a consumer, it is important to consider the accessibility and availability of repair options.
This will help to prolong the lifespan of the watch, avoiding the need to buy a new one.
By keeping these factors in mind, your watch purchase can be made with the confidence that it is a sustainable one.
Sustainable Watches We Love
Nordgreen Sustainable Watches
The first brand we love is Nordgreen from Copenhagen.
This sustainable watch company is B Corp certified and uses its business as a force for good.
With a transparent supply chain and a website that gives you all the information you need, with Nordgreen you can make an informed choice!
They use eco-friendly materials and sustainable practices in their production process.
These include using recycled packaging and rebalancing their carbon footprint.
The founders of Nordgreen are fully committed to the planet and their watches are all made with functionality, style and sustainability in mind.
Shipping and returns are free and they also repair watches – assuring you of your purchase’s long life.
Mondaine Sustainable Watches
Our next brand is Mondaine.
Mondaine is a Swiss watch brand recognized for its minimalist and iconic design.
They feature a clean and simple look, often referred to as the ‘Official Swiss Railways Watch’.
This is because it was designed after the clock that hangs in Swiss train stations.
The brand is not only known for its design and style, but also for its commitment to sustainability.
They use eco-friendly materials in their packaging and sustainable watch range and are working to reduce their carbon footprint.
Furthermore, they have a range of collections that cater to different audiences but always keep a focus on eco-friendly and sustainable options.
This makes them a responsible choice for those looking for a stylish and high-quality timepiece.
Triwa Sustainable Watches
The final sustainable watch brand we love is the Stockholm-based watchmaker, Triwa.
Triwa, short for “Transforming the Industry of Watches,” is a Swedish watch brand that focuses on sustainable practices.
They use recycled materials such as recycled plastic and reclaimed fishing nets in their watches.
Additionally, they have a “Repair and Reuse” program where customers can send in their old Triwa watch to be repaired.
Triwa even offers the ability to re-sell your old watch, further reducing waste.
The brand also focuses on transparency, providing detailed information on its production process and materials used.
Their designs are unique and often bold, yet functional. This makes them a stylish and eco-friendly choice for those in the market for a watch.
Best of all, to help you shop for a sustainable watch, you can use the code TRIWA15 at checkout to benefit from a 15% discount sitewide!
That’s it for this week.
Hopefully, you learned something new and feel empowered to make more conscious decisions when it comes to sustainability!
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