Seattle Sounders FC today announced that as part of its ongoing dedication to leading the way in sustainable, green practices, the club is going carbon neutral in 2019 and beyond, marking it as the first professional soccer team in North America to do so. Through this commitment, Sounders FC pledges that its operations will make no net contribution to atmospheric carbon dioxide, the leading cause of the climate crisis.
To begin its path to carbon neutrality, the club worked with Seattle-based Sustainable Business Consulting to calculate its greenhouse gas emissions and develop plans to reduce its impacts where possible. For sources unable to be eliminated – such as team travel for matches, scouting and other business – Sounders FC is offsetting the club’s emissions through the Evergreen Carbon Capture(ECC) program of Forterra, a nonprofit that works for regional sustainability. Using the club’s contribution to ECC, Forterra and its partner DIRT Corps are joining with the team and its fans to plant hundreds of trees in a part of the region that needs added tree cover. This not only reduces carbon dioxide, but enhances air and water quality.
“We’re incredibly excited to announce that our club is officially carbon neutral,” said Sounders FC Owner Adrian Hanauer. “The Sounders have always been committed to investing in our community, and that includes recognizing the immense responsibility we have as environmental stewards. Sustainability is a key pillar of our club and this new step is a logical extension of the efforts we have already had in place. We were pleased to work with Sustainable Business Consulting and Forterra in achieving carbon neutrality and look forward to continuing our partnership going forward.”
In calculating its footprint, Sounders FC worked to be as inclusive as possible, including all of the following emission sources:
- Pioneer Square business office operations, including energy, waste, paper, shipping, recycling and employee commuting
- Starfire office operations, including all emissions associated with operating the training facility for Sounders FC’s First Team, Tacoma Defiance and Sounders FC Academy
- Air travel for First Team
- Business travel and scouting
- Emissions generated by fans traveling to and from matches
- Energy use and waste from home games at CenturyLink Field