Why Scottish football clubs are keeping an eye on an English league two team…

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“Boris Johnson launch of COP26” by UK Prime Minister is licensed with CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

Thanks to COP26, Scottish football has now announced what it is aiming to do to help tackle climate change.

The Scottish Professional Football League (SPFL) and the Scottish Football Association (SFA) released a joint statement during the Glasgow conference with a number of ways to show how the game will be moving in a greener direction.

However, one team which is based in the fourth tier of the English professional leagues has been at the top of the eco division for a while now.

“Forest Green Rovers v Tranmere National League Play Off Final 2017 Wembley” by kennysarmy is licensed with CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

Forest Green Rovers FC, are also known as ‘the world’s greenest football club.’

The club based in Gloucestershire, England, installed many environmentally friendly features to their stadium including solar panels, electric car charging points, water recycling, an electric lawnmower, an organic pitch, and an vegan only menu for players and fans. Other ‘green’ highlights:

  • Forest Green Rovers’ absolute carbon footprint has decreased by 30% since 2017.
  • Its carbon footprint per spectator has decreased by 42% since the 2011/12 season.
  • In 2016/17, the team recycled over 8% of the water used from the main water supply.
  • The project decreased the amount of waste produced in the 2017/18 season by 14.7%.
  • The Forest Green Rovers is the only club to have Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) accreditation.

“Forest Green Rovers 1 Oldham Athletic 1, Football League Two 11.8.18” by Diego Sideburns is licensed with CC BY-NC-ND 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

The entire club is powered by 100% green energy from Ecotricity, some of which they generate themselves with the solar panels on the stadium roof and the solar tracker at the ground entrance.

“The New Lawn Stadium” by joncandy is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/

The grass the club play on is sustainable, free from pesticides and weed killers, and they cut the grass with a GPS-directed, solar-powered lawnmower.

They also collect rainwater that lands on the terrace stands and use it to irrigate the pitch rather than using mains water.

“Hampden Park” by raymccrae is licensed with CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Last week, the SPFL and SFA released a joint statement on the state of the how our beautiful game can become kinder on the environment.

“As the governing body, the Scottish FA has recently published its best practice guidelines, Environmental Sustainability in Scottish Football, and will commit to even more stringent measures as part of its new strategy, The Power of Scottish Football, over the next decade.”

“The Scottish FA has made significant improvements to the stadium as part of its co-hosting of UEFA EURO 2020 which have included:

 

  • Upgrading floodlights to a new interactive and energy-efficient LED system.
  • Upgrading all internal and external lighting to low energy LED.
  • Engage with the community to share Hampden as a community asset.
  • EV charging points in the stadium car park.
  • E-ticketing platform replacing manual ticket printing.
  • Send zero waste direct to landfill

 

 

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