Policy and Commitment
- A page dedicated to Sustainability can be found on the club’s website here: https://www.watfordfc.com/sustainability. The page includes a Water Policy, Energy Performance Policy, Environmental Policy, Biodiversity Policy, Waste Management Policy and Single-Use Policy.
- The Environmental Policy can be viewed on the website here https://www.watfordfc.com/storage/114504/Environmental-Policy.pdf
- The club is going through the application to be a signatory for UN Sports for Climate Action
- Will adhere to a 2030 reduction target and a 2040 Net Zero target. To be publicly announced soon after completion and acknowledgement of application.
- Announced a long-term partnership with leading global energy management and net zero consultancy ClearVUE, who will support the Hornets’ ambition to achieve net zero.
- 100% of electricity comes from a renewable source.
- Solar panel installation has now been completed at the training ground.
- Completed a drone survey for feasibility of solar on roofs of the stands at Vicarage Road.
- Commissioned CHP+ (combined heat and power) with utilisation of waste heat at training ground with additional 1500 litre water tank and heat exchanger unit for dome heating. This is due for completion in March 2023.
- Energy Efficiency policy can be viewed on the club’s website here: https://www.watfordfc.com/storage/114501/Energy-Performance-Policy.pdf
- Clearview energy management system has been integrated to all sites. Analysis and findings for reduction shared with departments regularly and discussed at monthly sustainability working group meetings.
- ESOS and SECR complaint.
- Currently an estimated 70% of all lighting across sites is LED. The club’s policy is to fit LED for all new installations and old failed lighting.
- Continues to advocate Train, London Underground and Overground above driving.
- There is no parking available for fans at the ground and street parking is restricted for local residents with matchday permits.
Single Use Plastic Reduction/Removal
- Single Use Policy can be viewed on the club’s website here: https://www.watfordfc.com/storage/114765/Single-Use-Policy.pdf. The policy aims to reduce and ultimately eliminate the use of Single-Use Plastic products within all Watford Football Club’s premises.
- Switched to reusable cups in November 2019.
- Eliminated single use plastic cutlery by switching to wooden alternatives and paper straws.
- Waste Management Policy can be viewed on the club’s website here: https://www.watfordfc.com/storage/114510/Waste-Management-Policy.pdf
- 100% of waste is diverted from landfill – general non-recyclable waste is sent to incineration for power production.
- Continued collaboration with catering partner and waste company to split and reduce waste and recycling of all waste streams inc., cardboard, mixed plastic (recycled), food and grass (bio-digestion).
- All recyclable waste is separated into cardboard, mixed recycling, food and glass streams for recycling.
- Recycling stations in offices.
- On 18thMarch 2023, the club will trial new recycling stations for plastic bottles, and mixed recycling on the Rookery concourse, prior to a rollout stadium wide. This will complement the reusable plastic cups.
- Water Policy can be viewed on the club’s website here: https://www.watfordfc.com/storage/114498/Water-Policy.pdf. The policy aims to drive reduction and conservation.
- Water logging devices have been fitted to meters and can now be analysed through Clearview for insights on usage patterns, as well as opportunities for measured reduction.
- Monitored and balanced use of water borehole at training ground.
- Investigating rainwater harvesting systems.
Plant based/low carbon food
- All food sold at the stadium is sustainably sourced with vegan options available at kiosks and hospitality. Dishes include broccoli, cauliflower and cheese pie (ve), The Shroom burger (Mushroom based burger) (ve).
- Cheese burgers are now 50% beef and 50% mushroom.
- Training ground food options are mostly sustainably sourced. Vegan options are available.
- Biodiversity Policy can be viewed on the club’s website here: https://www.watfordfc.com/storage/114507/Biodiversity-Policy.pdf
- Partnership with Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust to implement a management plan for all sites to make them nature reserves.
- Spring/Summer 2023 will see a site wide survey to understand fauna, flora, species and numbers of animal and insects, before implementation of strategies to refrain, reduce, restore, renew.
- Multiple projects delivered via club’s community trust NCS and PL Inspires programmes such as:
- Creating a garden space in Adeyfield Academy to increase access to green spaces for students, wildlife and insects.
- Local litter picks around the schools’ grounds and community areas to reduce pollution and waste – The Collett School, St Luke’s & Parmiters School.
- Upcycling damaged footballs into hanging baskets in Sir John Lawes Catholic High School – used in the school eco garden and local area.
- A three meter border has been implemented around the perimeter of the training ground which will not be cut and will be allowed to grow wild.
- Hedges at the training ground are to be cut on top which will allow for growth and fruit-bearing at the side for local wildlife.
- Through its energy contract, in June 2020 Watford contributed to Open Energy Market and Cool Earth’s partnership, protecting 6.40 acres of rainforest in Northern Peru.
- Education on topics of global warming, sustainability, recycling etc delivered to primary and secondary schools via community trust programme:
- Includes Premier League Inspires Challenge – environmental sustainability introduction and planning sessions in six secondary schools.
- Worked closely with one of PL Primary Stars partner school to align its delivery model (around plastic pollution) with the aims of their eco council members. Led to positive actions which saw the club adapt its delivery to include matters that the pupils were noticeably interested in, including lessons around school pollution levels where pupils learnt about the effects that car fumes can have on the environment.
- During the project, supported these pupils by creating litter groups which related to the club’s passion of reducing plastic pollution and related this to the pollution from factories that produce these materials. Additionally, the club incorporated the pupils findings into class assemblies with the goal of educating and inspiring their classmates around the effects pollution is having on the community.
- The groups have since gone on to achieve the following:
- Four pupils have signed up for local community social action projects at their local community centre
- 100% of pupils have been asked to lead the school councils termly meeting around climate change to governors in March.
- 100% of pupils achieved their school council award (school target of time spent independently learning about the subject).
- Educational delivery programmes to the Hornets’ workforce will also help drive Watford FC’s medium and long-term push to keep developing great habits, which support an increased sustainability profile across the club.
Communication and Engagement
- Dedicated sustainability page on the club’s main website: https://www.watfordfc.com/sustainability
- The Environmental Policy can be viewed on the website here https://www.watfordfc.com/storage/114504/Environmental-Policy.pdf.
- Raised awareness of the club’s environmental efforts through an article in the Mirror: https://www.mirror.co.uk/sport/football/news/watford-green-football-weekend-bees-29143034
- Participation and promotion of Planet League competitions and Green Football Weekend.
- Environmental updates to all staff and players via the club’s intranet. E.g. encouraged staff to score green goals across Green Football Weekend as part of the club’s participation in Planet League.
- Social media posts were used to promote reusable plastic cup use. Large displays behind cup return bins at the stadium.
- Will host the Dutch FA in March for the club’s home fixture vs Birmingham City. The club will give a presentation on sustainability at Watford FC and share ideas.
- Actively promoted the Watford FC x ClearVUE NetZero Partnership on YouTube. The video raises awareness of the current climate crisis and the importance of taking action.
Information sourced directly from Watford F.C. staff, website and third party websites
Information updated 07 March, 2023.