Bristol Sport has brought together the UK city’s leading sports clubs and Ashton Gate Stadium for the launch of Project Whitebeam, a wide-ranging sustainability initiative.
The project has been designed to recognise, measure and minimise the impact on the environment of the city’s sporting attractions.
Under the initiative, Championship football club Bristol City, Premiership Rugby club Bristol Bears and the British Basketball League’s Bristol Flyers have signed up to the UN Sports for Climate Action Framework. The framework sets a target of reaching net zero by 2040 and meeting a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
However, Project Whitebeam will also address waste, water, biodiversity and air quality issues.
Bristol Sport is based at Ashton Gate and oversees the business, commercial and operational interests of its affiliated clubs, including City, the Bears and the Flyers.
“We are mindful that many of our visitors attend matches and events in their leisure time, but it is our firm belief that we can progress without compromising any of the pleasure or joy which brings us together,” Bristol Sport said in a statement.
“Instead, Project Whitebeam will seek to find exciting opportunities and benefits for our fans, community, stadium and clubs as we start our journey together towards a better and more sustainable future.”
Bristol Sport highlighted a number of positive sustainability changes that have already taken place in the city. For instance, Ashton Gate generates over 100,000kWh of electricity through solar panels on the Lansdown stand roof, uses energy-efficient lighting, has water-saving devices, and maximises efficiency through the modern Building Management System.
Additionally, over 50% of food and drink travels less than 12 miles to Ashton Gate Stadium, while surplus matchday food is donated to a women’s homeless shelter less than a mile away.
Ashton Gate is the largest conference and events venue in the South West of England and plays host to a number of prominent entertainment events including music concerts and national sporting finals.
Under plans for a new Sporting Quarter (pictured), a Sports and Convention Centre will be built adjacent to the stadium. The proposed development will also include a hotel, along with residential and commercial units.
Image: Bristol Sport