Sustainability

Lega Serie A to pilot UEFA’s sustainability project

Lega Serie A, organising body of the top division of Italian club football, has teamed up with UEFA, the sport’s European governing body, to collaborate on a range of sustainability initiatives.

Serie A is the first football league selected by UEFA to carry out a pilot project aimed at defining a clear sustainability strategy for the 2023-24 season.

The plan, which is in line with UEFA’s 2030 Football Sustainability Strategy published in December 2021, features 11 themes, including the sustainability of events and the sustainability of infrastructure.

Other themes covered include anti-racism, protection of children, equality and inclusion, football for all abilities, health and well-being, support for refugees, solidarity and rights, circular economy, and climate protection.

For each of the individual areas of interest, Lega Serie A and UEFA will work together to outline ambitious and solid objectives to be pursued by 2030 in compliance with the latter’s sustainability strategy.

Lorenzo Casini, president of Lega Serie A, said: “Football is followed by millions of people around the world and for this reason it also has a responsibility to generate a positive impact and promote good practices regarding global issues such as environmental sustainability, the transition to a green economy and respect for human rights.

“I thank UEFA for identifying the right partner in Lega Serie A, after years of growing commitment in all social responsibility activities, to undertake together an ambitious and at the same time necessary path, which requires teamwork and sharing among all the players involved. I also thank the CEO of Lega Serie A Luigi De Siervo and the working groups involved who made it possible to start this project.”

Michele Uva, director of football and social responsibility at UEFA, added: “Environmental, social and governance criteria are increasingly being applied to promote sustainability and the operational and financing strategies of professional football.

“Our ‘Strength through Unity’ strategy defined UEFA’s long-term commitment to foster collaborative actions, guided by the belief that respect for human rights and the environment are at the heart of the success of European football. We are pleased that Lega Serie A is embarking on this path as a pilot league that will implement UEFA’s sustainability framework and create a cascade effect by exploiting the global Serie A platform.”

Earlier this month, UEFA unveiled its circular economy guidelines in conjunction with Zero Waste Week, with topics including waste minimisation, food and beverage management, and the role of renewable energy.

Last season, circular economy practices were tested with several clubs that participated in the Champions League, which led to the creation of a database of best practices and the formation of a consultation group among clubs to share knowledge and discuss common challenges, as well as a feasibility analysis.

UEFA also worked with PepsiCo to implement circular economy practices at the 2022 UEFA Champions League final in Paris.

Lega Serie A recently revealed plans to aid efforts to tackle the energy crisis. The efforts started with the fifth round of Serie A games, when lighting across stadia was restricted to a maximum of four hours of use per game.