Do you know the environmental impact of returns? We ran the numbers for 2020, and we estimate that returned inventory created 5.8 billion lbs of landfill waste in one year, and the shipping of returns emitted 16 million metric tons of carbon dioxide.

This episode of the Returns Report, featuring our host Larisa Summers and Meagan Knowlton, our Director of Sustainability, takes a deep dive into Optoro’s 2020 Impact Report, sustainable business practices, and more.

Our Environmental Impact

We’re really proud of the sustainability impacts we were able to achieve in 2020, in partnership with our clients and our communities:

  • On average, our clients were able to keep more than 96% of their returned and excess inventory out of landfills[1]
  • We helped retailers divert more than 3 million pounds of waste in 2020 by giving them solutions to manage and resell their returned inventory[1]
  • We also helped them prevent 4.7 million pounds of carbon emissions by reducing transportation and increasing efficiency in the reverse value chain[1]

Our Social Impact

Not only did we improve our environmental footprint, but we made a positive difference in our local, charitable, and reselling communities:

  • Last year, Optoro’s technology facilitated the donation of $4.3 million worth of goods to charity organizations[1]
  • 13.4K resellers supported recommerce by buying and reselling inventory from and from eBay, plus we launched a new partnership with eBay[1]
  • We partnered with charitable organizations such as Hand2Hand, Harvest Time International, and Soles4Souls

Looking ahead to 2021, we will continue to drive resilient retail toward a sustainable future, in addition to powering more circular commerce through our platform. We’re also investing in developing a new diversity, equity, and inclusion strategy for Optoro to make our company an even better place to work.

If you’re interested in learning more, check out:

Source 1: Powering Resilient Retail, Optoro 2020 Impact Report | Optoro (January 2021)