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ECA unveils first Sustainability Strategy

May 02 2024

The European Club Association (ECA) has launched its first Sustainability Strategy which it claims underlines a commitment to environmental issues facing football.

ECA unveils first Sustainability Strategy

The strategy is the culmination of a process that saw Gaia Pretner appointed as the ECA’s Head of Sustainability and the formation of a Sustainability Working Group.

It outlines a five-step approach that clubs need to adhere to in order to achieve success.

The steps are: to create a dedicated structure or function for sustainability; define a vision that aligns sustainability practices with good governance; assess impacts, risks, and opportunities to establish targets; publicise sustainability strategies to ensure transparency; and adopt initiatives that encompass training on sustainability principles.

"While acknowledging that we may not have all the solutions, our new Sustainability Strategy will be at the core of every decision going forward." ECA Chairman Nasser Al-Khelaïfi

“Sustainability must be a priority for all stakeholders,” said ECA Chairman Nasser Al-Khelaïfi.

“Our sport faces huge challenges from climate change, racism, and social exclusion – growing more urgent by the day.

“In the face of these challenges, it is our responsibility to take proactive measures within our sphere of influence to minimise the impact on our members and supporting clubs in finding solutions locally. While acknowledging that we may not have all the solutions, our new Sustainability Strategy will be at the core of every decision going forward.”

The ECA also stated its view that sustainability in football is no longer an optional endeavour. Instead, it believes that it must be integrated into the core strategy of the sport’s organisations.

The ECA added that its approach is to lead by example in sustainability in order to inspire and empower clubs to take action.

“Our social objectives revolve around the policies of combating racial discrimination from football, providing safe havens for young children; ensuring fair treatment and inclusion for all; making football accessible to people of all abilities; safeguarding the health and well-being of football participants of all ages; supporting refugee integration and championing dignity; and respect and equal rights for everyone,” said Pretner.

Image: ECA

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