News article

EPCR launches new sustainability strategy

April 13 2023

European Professional Club Rugby (EPCR) has launched its new sustainability strategy, impACT, for the tournament organisers of the Heineken Champions Cup and the EPCR Challenge Cup.

EPCR launches new sustainability strategy

The strategy builds on EPCR’s existing sustainability practices and social responsibility by focusing on delivering positive environmental change across the organisation from its administration to tournaments, players and partnerships. 

The impACT strategy will also support decision-making surrounding key activities linked to the organisation of the Heineken Champions Cup and EPCR Challenge Cup. EPCR also revealed that Board Member Andrea Rinaldo, a former Italy national team player who is a renowned hydrologist and the Stockholm Water Prize Laureate 2023, will become EPCR’s impACT Ambassador. 

“The overarching mission of EPCR is to continue to create outstanding rugby experiences for players and fans,” said EPCR Chairman Dominic McKay. “We can only do that if we ensure we are adapting and developing practices and solutions that will help us create a more sustainable future for rugby.

“EPCR is committed to raising the profile of sustainability and environmental issues across the rugby family. We are delighted that Andrea Rinaldo, Stockholm Water Prize Laureate 2023, has agreed to be our first impACT Ambassador. His passion for both rugby and the sustainable environment alongside his extensive expertise make him the ideal person to support the delivery of impACT.”

“As sport around the globe recognises the ways event delivery can impact on the environment, and particularly on climate, this strategy can help guide our efforts towards offering even better, and more responsible events and Finals.” EPCR Marketing and Commercial Director Francois Vergnol

The strategy has been developed in collaboration with sustainability agency The SHIFT and is supported by funding from the Swiss Canton of Vaud, where EPCR’s Lausanne headquarters are located. The scheme concentrates on objectives linked to two key pillars of respect and growth, which will see a focus on good stewardship of the game and maximising the positive impact of EPCR and its tournaments.

Some of EPCR’s existing initiatives include encouraging the appointment of more female match officials; appointing the first all-female team of match officials for a men’s EPCR match; working with local community groups in the region of Finals venues; applying reduce, reuse and recycle principles; incorporating sustainability initiatives in agreements with Finals venues; supporting rugby participation and trialling remote broadcast production operations to minimise travel.

EPCR Marketing and Commercial Director Francois Vergnol added: “We have taken measures to understand clearly where we are, which have enabled us to make the right decisions and take positive steps towards purposeful change.

“As sport around the globe recognises the ways event delivery can impact on the environment, and particularly on climate, this strategy can help guide our efforts towards offering even better, and more responsible events and Finals.”

Image: Hanson Lu on Unsplash

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