Sky and Tottenham Hotspur to make Premier League fixture against Chelsea the world’s first net zero carbon major football match, ahead of COP26

Monday 6 September 2021
  • Spurs’ home game against London rivals Chelsea is aiming to be net zero, through emission reductions and offsetting the remaining footprint through reforestation projects
  • #GameZero will educate football fans on the role that the sport they love can play in addressing climate change and demonstrate how they can take positive actions to reduce their own carbon footprint
  • The game is supported by the UK government as hosts of COP26, the UN Climate Change Conference, and is part of Sky’s sponsorship of the Summit

Sky has partnered with Tottenham Hotspur to host the world’s first net zero carbon football game at an elite level.

The September 19th fixture between Tottenham and Chelsea is supported by COP26 and the Premier League, and will be branded #GameZero, with the ambition of being net zero carbon. This is achieved when emissions are reduced as much as possible, with the remainder offset through natural projects that remove emissions from the atmosphere.

Sky, Tottenham Hotspur and the UK Government want the game to raise awareness of the threat of climate change and inspire football fans to make simple changes that will help reduce their carbon footprint.

Jonathan Licht, Managing Director, Sky Sports, said: “We’re proud to be working with COP26 and Tottenham Hotspur to make #GameZero the world’s first net zero carbon football match at the elite level. We hope that by using the power of sport, we can inspire and support football fans to make simple changes to reduce their carbon footprint and make more climate-friendly choices.”

Tottenham Hotspur Chairman Daniel Levy said: “We are delighted to be the chosen partner of Sky on this ground-breaking initiative that will demonstrate the role our game can play in addressing the urgent issue of climate change. As the Premier League’s greenest club, Tottenham Hotspur is passionate about our planet - we look forward to showcasing our wide range of sustainable measures that are already in place and encouraging our fans to take simple actions that can make a huge difference.”

COP26 President-Designate Alok Sharma said: “Climate change affects every aspect of our lives, including the sports that we love to watch and play. We can all take steps to help protect the planet for future generations, including in major sporting events. That is why I am delighted COP26 is working with Sky, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea and the Premier League to show how football is going One Step Greener by hosting the world’s first major net zero football match.”

#GameZero will demonstrate the green steps that fans, the sporting world, and broadcasters can take to work towards a zero-carbon future. Sky is a Principal Partner and Media Partner to COP26 and has committed to be net zero carbon by 2030, cutting its own emissions and those made by customers’ using its products, by 50% over the next decade.

At Spurs’ 21/22 season opening fixture – the 1-0 victory against Premier League Champions Manchester City – carbon measurement specialists RSK used direct data, including a fan survey to measure regular matchday emissions, including fan journeys; squad journeys; energy and waste at the stadium and matchday employee commutes, to create a baseline of emissions to look to reduce.

For the match to be net zero, Sky and Tottenham will work to minimise emissions from matchday activity such as energy used to power the game, travel to and from the stadium for both fans and clubs, and dietary choices at the stadium. Hundreds of individuals involved in the game – from Sky Sports’ producers to Spurs’ chef feeding fans and crew – are working to making #GameZero happen.

Earlier this year, Tottenham Hotspur was named the Premier League’s greenest club following a study carried out by the UN-backed Sport Positive Summit, with a range of sustainable measures implemented across its operations. The Club and Sky Sports are also both signatories of the UN Sports for Climate Action Framework and both Sky and Spurs are founding partners of Count Us In – a global movement aimed at mobilising one billion people in the fight against climate change.

#GameZero will be played six weeks ahead of the UN’s COP26 Climate Change Conference, hosted by the UK Government in Glasgow, which brings together world leaders to accelerate global action to fight climate change. It will also form part of the UK Government’s Together for our Planet campaign which celebrates what individuals and organisations across the country are doing to go #OneStepGreener to protect the planet ahead of COP26.

Sky Sports and the UK Government are also partnering with “CUP26”. From 7th September, fans can sign up for free at cup26.co.uk and score goals for their club by completing planet-protecting activities. The tournament trophy will be awarded in the first week of COP26.

Notes to editors:

Sky

For those emissions which remain, Sky is working with Natural Capital Partners to restore natural carbon sinks which remove emissions from the atmosphere, by supporting a community reforestation in East Africa, and creating new UK native woodlands to support the UK’s net zero objectives. Sky and Tottenham will also plant trees locally to the stadium later this year.

Sky Sports’ production of the game for television viewers will also have a net-zero impact, and like every Sky Sports UK host broadcast in 2021 it will be an albert certified production.

Sky Sports is passionate about reducing its impact on the environment and has already improved operations in a number of ways, including introducing remote productions that reduce the amount of equipment and crew travelling to events, as well as moving all UK and Irish OB Generators to biofuel. Sky Sports Studios are powered by 100% renewable electricity and since January 2021 all Sky Sports UK productions have been carbon neutral.

Tottenham

Tottenham Hotspur is committed to minimising the environmental impact across its operations and has a wide range of sustainable measures in place across the Club. Measures include:

  • 100% renewable energy and Zero Scope 2 emissions at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, with LED lighting (including floodlights) and high-efficiency building services systems in place to reduce energy use
  • Single-use plastic reduction measures in place across the Club - players drink water from cartons, food is served in disposable packaging with wooden cutlery, and even beer keg caps are recycled at the stadium
  • Water consumption minimised with waterless urinals and low flow fittings and fixtures.
  • An ecological habitat established at the Training Centre, including an organic Kitchen Garden; hundreds of new and semi-mature trees and tens of thousands of new plants and hedgerows; bug hotels and bat houses; wildlife ponds; green roofs and capture and re-harvest rainwater; solar panels and air-sourced heat pumps
  • The shirts that players wear on the pitch and the replica jerseys for fans to buy are constructed with 100% recycled polyester fabric, which is made from recycled plastic bottles

Tottenham Hotspur will be encouraging fans attending the Chelsea match to take sustainable actions on the day, including:

  • Using public transport – the Club has driven significant investment in its local transport infrastructure with the stadium served by four train stations and a free matchday shuttle bus. Recent analysis has shown that the Club is close to achieving its target of no more than 23% of supporters travelling by private car on matchdays
  • Cycling to the match – the Club has ample bike parking provision outside the stadium, with its security policy allowing for equipment such as helmets, puncture kits and removable seats to be taken into the ground
  • Choosing a plant-based food option – all food served inside the stadium is locally and sustainably sourced, with plant-based options available across all outlets and in Premium areas
  • Recycling waste – the Club has a ‘zero to landfill’ waste management programme, with clear recycling instructions for fans on its bins, as well as a reusable beer cup scheme

Chelsea

  • Chelsea’s 2021/22 Nike match kits are composed of 100% recycled polyester fabric, which is made from recycled plastic bottles
  • Hyundai, Chelsea’s Global Automotive Partner, provide the Club with Kona electric vehicles which are used by staff to travel to away games and between sites
  • Hyundai have also offered a free Kona electric leasing scheme to the Women’s team, with 13 players taking this option up
  • Along with the Club, Hyundai have installed numerous charging units at Chelsea’s Cobham Training Centre to encourage the use of electric vehicles
  • Chelsea’s food produce, including meat, is from super-locally sourced suppliers and organic farms, and focus on lower carbon meats, such as poultry, instead of beef.

Furthermore, the Tottenham Hotspur squad will travel to the match by coach to reduce the number of car movements, and as the away team, Chelsea, will also be asking all their staff to travel across London sustainably. Both sets of players will head to the stadium on a coach that is running on biofuel, which is a form of renewable diesel produced from food waste products and reduces carbon emissions significantly, and the players from both teams will also be drinking water on the day from cartons provided by Spurs as opposed to plastic bottles.

About Sky

Sky is Europe’s leading media and entertainment company and is proud to be part of the Comcast group. Across six countries, we connect our 23.4 million customers to the best entertainment, sports, news and arts including our own award-winning original content.

Our technology, including the market leading Sky Q, connects people to everything they love – with entertainment from Sky TV, Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and BBC iPlayer, and apps like Spotify, YouTube, BBC Sounds, Highbrow, Fiit, and more, in one place, easy. Our streaming service NOW, brings viewers all the enjoyment of Sky with the flexibility of a contract-free service.

Building on the success of Sky Originals like Chernobyl, Gangs of London and Brassic, we are doubling our investment in original content by 2024 through Sky Studios. Sky News provides impartial and trustworthy journalism for free, Sky Arts is the UK’s only dedicated free-to-air arts channel making the arts accessible for everyone and Sky Sports, our leading sports broadcasting service brings customers some of the biggest and best global sporting events from the Premier League to Formula 1 and everything in-between. Our new TV and movie studio, Sky Studios Elstree, which will open in 2022, is expected to create over 2,000 new jobs and generate an additional £3 billion of production investment in the UK over the first five years.

We believe that we can be a force for good in the communities in which we operate. We’re committed to being Europe’s first net zero carbon entertainment company by 2030 and we’re proud to be a Principal Partner and Media Partner of COP26. We take pride in our approach to diversity and inclusion: we’ve been recognised by The Times and Stonewall for our commitment to diversity and we’ve set ambitious 2025 targets to continue to increase diversity and representation. We’re also committed to investing £30million across our markets over three years to improve our approach to diversity and inclusion, and to tackle racial injustice.

About One Step Greener & Together for our Planet

‘One Step Greener’ is part of the UK Government’s campaign, Together for our Planet, which aims to raise awareness of COP26 and climate issues ahead of November. The Together for our Planet campaign is building momentum in the lead up to COP26 by showcasing how people across the UK are going ‘One Step Greener’ to tackle climate change. Together for our Planet is also working with small businesses across the UK to support their journey towards becoming greener and more sustainable. By November, we want as many small businesses as possible to pledge to go ‘One Step Greener’ and sign up to the globally-recognised SME Climate Commitment, which helps organisations become more energy efficient, switch to electric vehicles and active travel, and become landfill free. By doing so, they can protect the planet and their business, and help us start a green business revolution. This is about all of us playing our part. Together. Now. For our planet.

About COP26

This November, the UK will host the UN climate change conference COP26, in Glasgow with our partners, Italy. This will provide an opportunity for the world to come together and commit to urgent action. As hosts of COP26, the UK will lead by example during this unprecedented time. The UK has been promoting four key goals to governments around the world, driving real progress on a global scale.

  1. Secure global net zero and keep 1.5 degrees within reach.
  2. Urgently adapt to protect communities and natural habitats.
  3. Mobilise finance.
  4. Work together to accelerate action.

Delivering on these four goals will also make our recovery from COVID-19 one that builds a better future - one with green jobs, cleaner air and increasing prosperity, without harming the planet.

At home, the UK has been leading the way and shown that green growth is possible - over the last 30 years our economy has grown by 78% while cutting emissions by 44%. The UK was the first country to commit to reduce carbon emissions by 78% by 2035 and is on course to be the fastest G7 country to decarbonise cars and vans by 2030.

The Prime Minister’s Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution will help us reach our climate commitments, create thousands of highly-skilled green jobs and establish world leading industries in areas such as green finance and technology. At the same time, under the G7 and COP26 Presidencies, the UK has been promoting four key goals to governments around the world, driving real progress on a global scale.

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