Liverpool bolsters green claims with BSI accolade

Liverpool has announced it has become the first Premier League football club to be awarded the British Standards Institute (BSI) ISO 20121 certificate, which recognises and awards the successful delivery of sustainable events.

Recipients of the certificate need to demonstrate they are minimising potential negative impacts on the environment, communities and local economy – maximising the positive impacts and leaving a legacy to be proud of.

The certification is the latest accolade for Liverpool’s The Red Way initiative, which puts sustainability at the heart of everything the club does, including matchday operations, and the running of Anfield stadium and AXA Training Centre. 

It follows the club topping the 2021 Sport Positive Environmental Sustainability League, recognising it as the greenest in the Premier League, and its current backing for the upcoming Green Football Weekend.

Taking place this weekend, the venture brings together 80 of the UK’s professional football clubs, fans, families and communities, with fans encouraged to score green goals by taking climate-friendly actions.

The Red Way, Liverpool’s sustainability venture, launched in January 2021. The overall objective is for the club to be net-zero across its sport operations by the end of the 2022-23 season, which means Liverpool will be implementing a “robust” carbon-reduction plan and offsetting any remaining carbon emissions.

By 2025, the club also aims to have 100% of club operations run on low carbon and clean energy sources, and by 2030 to reduce actual operational carbon emissions by 50%. It now uses sustainable fuels in its team buses, which creates a reduction in carbon emissions of up to 90% from regular diesel.

The BSI certification has been awarded following a full audit of the club’s Sustainability Management System. All sites, including Anfield, were independently assessed to audit activities, products and services.  

Hannah Simpkins, Liverpool’s vice-president of club operations, said: “It is an amazing honour for the club and recognition for The Red Way strategy. This standard provides us with credibility in the approach we’re taking towards sustainability in sport.   

“It’s taken an incredible amount of work and effort from the LFC team to get this certification from the BSI in place.  

“We are very aware of the responsibility we hold as a global football club to help inspire and encourage positive behaviour change. With hundreds of millions of supporters around the world, we know we are in a strong position to help influence sustainable decisions in their day-to-day lives which is why it’s hugely important to us.”

Martin Townsend, director for BSI Centre of Excellence for Sustainability, added: “There is so much passion and inspiration that football provides to us all, particularly the young. However, the beautiful game needs to be not only inspirational on the pitch but sustainable in the way it is delivered. 

“At BSI, we are proud to provide support in this area and will continue to work alongside industry and society to accelerate the adoption of sustainable measures.”