Major League Soccer (MLS) has announced the expansion of its sustainability platform at the 2018 All-Star Week in Atlanta City, partnering with South Pole and Sport and Sustainability International (SandSI) to reduce and offset emissions and promote healthy, sustainable communities in North America and across the globe.
The Greener Goals platform under MLS WORKS, Major League Soccer's community outreach initiative, looks to reduce the League's greenhouse gas footprint and raise awareness about environmental issues.
MLS is offsetting emissions associated with hotel accommodations, on-site transportation, staff, player, executive and MLS guest travel, and operations at Mercedes-Benz Stadium for the 2018 MLS All-Star Game in Atlanta, GA presented by Target and the week of activities leading up to the match on August 1st.
Improved Cookstoves for Rural Communities in Kenya
According to the World Health Organization, nearly 4 million people die prematurely every year from illnesses including cancer caused by household air pollution from inefficient cooking stoves. MLS is partnering with South Pole and SandSI to purchase high-quality carbon credits issued from the distribution of emissions-reducing, life-improving cookstoves amongst communities in need in Kenya.
The provision of cleaner, more efficient cookstoves not only improves the health and wellbeing of local people – particularly women and girls, who spend most of their time at home – but also reduces associated deforestation caused by firewood collection, and supports regional economic development, as the cookstoves are produced locally in Kenya.
" MLS has been committed throughout the years to raising awareness for environmental issues," says JoAnn Neale, Chief Administrative & Social Responsibility Office at Major League Soccer, continuing, "Taking bigger steps now, we're not only addressing our own environmental impact, but providing life-saving cookstoves that will improve overall health and reduce cancer risks. We are proud to support a project that furthers our commitment to the environment and also aligns with our long-standing commitment to fighting cancer through our Soccer Kicks Cancer program."
According to Allen Hershkowitz, PhD, Chairman of Sport and Sustainability International, "MLS's investment into life-saving greenhouse gas offsets in a low-income African nation is advancing many of the most important Sustainable Development Goals promoted by the United Nations, including climate action, gender equality and clean energy. MLS should be congratulated for producing an ecologically responsible event that offers important lessons for all businesses to emulate."
" Major League Soccer is truly playing for the planet by expanding its sustainability program," says Michael Malara, VP Sustainability North America, South Pole. "MLS is going beyond simply measuring and reducing its own emissions: it is furthering the UN-backed Global Goals around cleaner technology, better health, zero poverty and improved livelihoods – and inspiring other organizations to follow suit."
MLS is also investing in environmentally valuable initiatives that provide direct benefits to the local community in Atlanta City, host city of the 2018 All-Star Week, and Mercedes-Benz Stadium, host venue of the 2018 All-Star match.
Read the full details of Major League Soccer's expanded sustainability and community outreach initiatives in the MLS media release on their website.