Forest Green Rovers: The world’s first carbon neutral football club

Forest Green Rovers

Nailsworth-based Forest Green Rovers was recently described by FIFA as the greenest football club in the world, and in 2017 was officially recognised as the world’s first vegan football club. Now they’ve gained another global accolade – the world’s first United Nations certified carbon neutral football club. The club has signed up to the UNFCCC Climate Neutral Now initiative, which aims to achieve a climate neutral world by mid-century.

Forest Green Chairman and Ecotricity Founder Dale Vince said: “It’s a real honour to be the very first sports club in the world to be named carbon neutral by the UN. It’s great to be first, but I believe it’s only a matter of time before the big boys like Real Madrid, Man United and the San Francisco 49ers follow our example.”

He said science tells us that, to avoid the worst aspects of climate change, we must limit the global temperature rise to less than two degrees Celsius. This is the central aim of the Paris Agreement, adopted in 2015, and if we are to realise it, the UN says we must all do more and be quicker to tackle climate change before 2020.

FGR has consistently led the way when it comes to sustainability in sport – from recycled rainwater to an organic pitch and running on 100% green energy at home to reaching around three billion people worldwide, taking the green message to a new  audience.

There’s a lot more it wants to do to put sustainability on the map for the world of sport. Its next step is to build what we believe will be the greenest football stadium in the world.

The club has put in a planning application for a new stadium called Eco Park.

Designed by world renowned architects Zaha Hadid and made almost entirely out of wood, it will be the first of its kind in the world. With a capacity of 5,000, Eco Park, would be sited in parkland where some five hundred trees and 1.8km of new hedgerows would be planted.