The top five tips for developing a sports sustainability strategy By Anna Cantwell

In my previous article I showcased the top five sustainability impact areas in sport, covering; carbon, labour rights, waste, biodiversity, and social value. Now that we have identified those main impact areas, the logical next steps are to begin developing those into an effective and purposeful sports  sustainability strategy.

1. Prioritise

As detailed in the last blog of this series, there are many impacts within the sports sector which can be overwhelming. Understand what impacts are most important to your organisation and set priorities, think about:

2. Engage the community

The community is a very important stakeholder within the sport industry, therefore they should be involved when building your sustainability strategy. The community can not only help to guide the strategies’ vision but also it’s delivery.

3. Set SMART targets

Once you’ve agreed on your priorities, set SMART targets to drive and monitor progress. Here’s an example of a SMART target:

  • Goal: Reduce greenhouse gas emissions from sports events by 25% within the next five years.
  • Specific: The target focuses on reducing greenhouse gas emissions, specifically related to sports events.
  • Measurable: The target is quantifiable, aiming for a 25% reduction in emissions. The baseline emissions data should be established, and progress can be tracked over time.
  • Achievable: The target is ambitious yet attainable within a five-year timeframe based on actions identified to reduce emissions.
  • Relevant: The target aligns with the sustainability goals and commitments of the organisation.
  • Time-bound: The target specifies a timeframe of five years, providing a clear deadline for achieving the desired reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

4. Build a roadmap

Now that you have clear targets, build a roadmap to achieve them. Your roadmap should include:

  • KPIs
  • Detailed initiatives
  • Resource allocation
  • Roles & responsibilities
  • Monitoring and evaluation
  • Communication  engagement
  • Review and continuous improvement

5. Communicate and implement

A strategy is only useful if it is communicated and implemented. When doing this, focus both internally and externally:

  • Internal: Who needs to know? Do they need training? How can they be made accountable of the role they need to play?
  • External: Who needs to know? How can you support them? How can they support you?

For more information or to find out how Action Sustainability supports organisations to develop and deliver their own sustainability strategies, reach out to our Senior Consultant Imogen Player.

For more information

Anna Cantwell
Senior Consultant

Related news articles from the Action Sustainability blog

Image top left to right: James Cadman (AS), Tom Dunn (TfL), Anna Fish (TfL), Ian Heptonstall (AS), Maud Vastbinder (SKAO), Sarah Chatfield (AS), George Thurley (SKAO), David Stokes (DBT), Vaishali Baid (AS)

CO2 Performance Ladder Pilot Launches in the UK

This was posted in Energy & Carbon, Sustainability Strategy

Action Sustainability is partnering with SKAO for the launch of the CO2 Performance Ladder pilot in the United Kingdom.

Read Article

Navigating the challenges of a Just Transition

This was posted in All Topics, Energy & Carbon, Sustainability Strategy

As we move to a greener and more inclusive society, we are becoming more aware of the impacts of our actions. Head of Climate Dr. James Cadman explores the significance of a just transition in our journey towards a more sustainable future

Read Article

Earth Day 2024: Our Subject Matter Experts Share their Perspectives

This was posted in Biodiversity, Energy & Carbon, Sustainability Strategy

For Earth Day 2024, we asked our subject matter experts to share their perspectives on the key issues facing the planet and what actions are needed.

Read Article