How Can We Make Sports Sustainable (and Why Should We)?

There’s no denying that sport is an important part of our society.

It offers opportunities for physical activity in a world that is increasingly diminishing. It promotes good health and well-being, and it provides a means of social contact, a place for people to bond over shared interests.

At the same time, however, sports can have a huge and devastating impact on our environment. The reasons for this are many; the use of non-renewable energy, the harmful emissions from building and operating sports facilities, and the travel to and from these places all play a key role.

The good news is the sports industry is in the perfect position to enact real change.

From fostering awareness and advocacy to fundraising and influencing consumer behaviour, the sheer amount of people gathering in one place makes messaging much easier. Even the competitive nature of sports may help, with “friendly pressure” driving people to act.

These reasons are why the past few years have seen huge clubs and sports institutions begin to take environmental concerns seriously by hiring specialist expertise, partnering with external institutions, and integrating sustainability programmes into every aspect of their businesses.

Guiding them are the five principles of the United Nations Sports for Climate Action Framework:

Undertake systematic efforts to promote greater environmental responsibility

Reduce overall climate impact

Promote sustainable and responsible consumption

Educate for climate action

Advocate for climate action through communication

Many smaller sports clubs risk getting left behind if they don’t adapt with the rest. However, many worry that becoming more sustainable will take time and resources they simply don’t have.

That’s why Play it Green makes it easy for sports clubs and those associated to take their next step on the journey to Net Zero, no matter how far along they may already be.

At absolutely no cost to the club, you can throw ‘Climate Positive Match’ days to encourage your fans and sponsors to do more for the environment. To do this, Play it Green will provide you with a bespoke online Forest Garden where users can plant trees for just 50p, as well as sustainability tips and challenges to engage, educate, and drive real behaviour change.

You could also add trees onto each ticket you sell for your games, making an immediate and long-lasting impact on our environment.

The trees are planted through the Eden Reforestation Project in Madagascar to rebuild and protect some of the Earth’s most vital ecosystems. They also help lift vulnerable communities out of poverty by paying them not only to plant but to care for the trees as they grow.

By partnering with Play it Green, you will also gain access to our full support pack, including marketing material, Kitemark Badges, and our Net Zero Framework. This contains nine key areas to plan and action improvements within your business and delivery.

If you want to do even more for the environment, Play it Green can support you on your journey.

As one of our partners, you will have access to green energy and our network of sustainability experts, products, and services. Through our partnership with Eaasi Carbon, for example, you can receive complete carbon footprint reporting to be used in your accounts as well as rebalance the company’s historical and current carbon footprint.

Clubs that do more for the environment don’t just get to feel good about their positive impact. Implementing sustainable practices also strengthens the club’s appeal to new fans and partners, helping to engage the community, grow revenues, and strengthen its place within the community.

With Play it Green, you can also directly raise money for your community programmes as for every £1 spent on planting trees, 10p is given to a good cause of your choice, including your own club or Foundation.

Why not see what you can accomplish today?

Contact us to see how we can help your sports club today

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