Nike Revamp Includes Environmental Program

In addition to raising the minimum age of workers, Beaverton, Ore.-based Nike Inc., will launch a program to improve worker conditions and reduce use of non-recyclable and toxic materials.

One of several initiatives announced by CEO Philip H. Knight on Tuesday, the new Environmental, Health, and Safety Management System will begin in June. Knight says the system will go beyond the requirements of the ISO 14001 standard.

As part of the program, the sports-equipment maker will conduct indoor air testing at all footwear factories and follow-up testing where required.

Nike also is accelerating a program to replace industry standard petroleum-based solvents with safer water-based compounds; and is working with partners to create materials that contain only natural chemicals that can be recycled back into themselves without loss of value.

Nike's goal is to create eco-effective products that consumers can return to be used in more products.

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