To celebrate Earth Day, MLS has announced several projects as part of MLS WORKS’ Greener Goals initiative. The initiative will see the league partner with One Tree Planted for a reforestation project, as well as South Pole to protect the Amazon rainforest in Brazil.
Through the partnership with One Tree Planted, MLS will plant 27,000 trees – 1,000 for each club currently playing in the league – in national forests across the United States and Canada. The project involves 67 acres of land, or 38 soccer pitches, and will provide environmental benefits such as cleaner air, water, stabilized soils, and increased biodiversity.
With South Pole, the league will buy carbon credits to support the Envira project, which will protect 39,300 hectares of tropical forests from logging and encroaching cattle ranches. Protecting the tropical forests will mitigate the release of 1,250,000 tons of CO2 emissions on average each year. The project also provides economic opportunities for local communities through sustainable farming, the sale of acai berries and medicinal plants, promoting environmental stewardship, and providing health services and educational courses.
In addition to raising awareness, these projects aim to continue reducing the league’s carbon footprint. Over the last three years, the league has partnered with South Pole to offset more than 26,000 tons of CO2 emissions, the equivalent of 39,000 flights from San Jose to Montréal.
MLS is continuing to explore other opportunities to reduce emissions at MLS stadiums, including providing resources for clubs to create circular economies. MLS will partner with Green Sports Alliance to help teams and stadiums reach benchmark environmental performances.