The FA kickstarts 5-year sustainability plan to reach net zero

The English Football Association (FA) has launched a five-year sustainability strategy to achieve net zero by 2040.

Head of procurement and sustainability Ruaidhri Dunn said the FA is “delighted” to launch the new strategy, called Playing for the Future.

“We are very proud of our achievements in recent years to become more environmentally friendly, including Wembley Stadium being awarded the highest standard of sustainability by the ISO [ISO20121], however we want to make further progress,” he added.

The new strategy will see the FA working towards having operational control across all three scopes and to reduce CO2 emissions 50% by 2030, condense electricity consumption by 30% by 2028 and decrease gas consumption by 20% by 2028 (all from a 2019 baseline).

Over £35 million will be invested in delivering the FA’s net zero targets, including £6.5 million in energy retrofit projects across Wembley Stadium and St. Georges Park. A further £1 million will be spent on wider energy management projects across the two sites, with full measurement and effectiveness reporting in place.

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The new strategy has been created following consultation with a wide range of football stakeholders and environmental experts.

It also includes goals to optimise resource consumption across Wembley Stadium and St. George’s Park by minimising the impact of waste through procurement choices, avoiding waste, identifying reuse opportunities and maximising recyclability.

FA chief executive Mark Bullingham said the association aims to make “tangible process” though its initiatives while “raising awareness and bringing the wider football community with us on this journey.”

The strategy also includes raising awareness of sustainable practices across football by working with broadcasters and corporate partners to encourage uptake of sustainability practices and educate fans to raise awareness of climate change issues and promote climate action.

Elsewhere, Liverpool FC and Tottenham Hotspur FC have been named the most sustainable Premier League clubs for the second time by the Sport Positive League.

The clubs both achieved 24 points out of a possible top score of 27, across areas such as policy, clean energy, energy efficiency and single-use plastics.

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