Porto joins sports sustainability project


FC Porto joins environmental activities Image: FC Porto

The Portuguese professional sports club based in Porto (Portugal) FC Porto recently announced its adherence to and participation as a pilot partner in the Achieving Circularity in Cities through the Environmental Sustainability of Sports (ACCESS) project.

‘FC Porto’ stated that this engagement doesn’t only complement the recently launched initiatives and projects locally but, at the same time, it further demonstrates and proves the FC Porto’s strategic directions towards improving environmental management in operations and governance and becoming a benchmark when it comes to environmental sustainability in sports nationally.

FC Porto or simply Porto is a Portuguese professional sports club based in Porto (Portugal). It is best known for the professional football team playing in the Primeira Liga, the top flight of Portuguese football.

The Estádio do Dragão is an all-seater football stadium in Porto, Portugal, and the home ground of FC Porto since 2003. It has a seating capacity of 50,033, making it the third largest football stadium in Portugal.

The Achieving Circularity in Cities through the Environmental Sustainability of Sports (ACCESS) project is one of the latest and most advanced European projects that explore the world of environmental sustainability and management in sports.

The project is funded by the European Union’s (EU’s) Erasmus+ programme with ACCESS looking at narrowing the gap between the current environmental performances of sport clubs, associations and their strategies by analyzing the strategies and targets of the Cities and regions.

Erasmus+ is the EU’s program to support education, training, youth, and sport in Europe. It has an estimated budget of €26.2 billion.

The European Union (EU) is a supranational political and economic union of 27 member-states that are located primarily in Europe. The union has a total area of 4,233,255.3 km² and an estimated total population of nearly 447 million.

‘FC Porto’ further stated that as a sport organization on the project, FC Porto will participate in a Europewide screening of current environmental practices and principles in stadium sports – including mobility, food and beverage consumption, event management as well as facilities and infrastructure maintenance among others. By working with proven and experienced organizations such as ACR+ from Brussels (Belgium) and the Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies in Pisa (Italy), this screening will allow FC Porto to identify the hotspots and potentials for environmental improvements and launch a cross-sectoral cooperation with the local and regional authorities to find solutions and define action plans which both sides would mutually benefit from.

As an added value of being a partner on the project, FC Porto will also attend valuable tailor-made training sessions and partake in international mobility opportunities and study visits, as the project also includes the Gaelic Athletic Association (Irish international amateur sporting and cultural organization) and the Welsh and Danish Football Associations.

ACR+ is an international network of Cities and regions sharing the aim of promoting a sustainable resource management and accelerating the transition towards a circular economy on their territories and beyond.

The club sent out a statement which read, “Keeping in mind the pillars that sustain FC Porto (rigor, competence, passion, and ambition), we intend to demonstrate leadership and commitment to sustainability by using sporting and cultural events as a stage to echo this type of initiative. We believe that the effectiveness of the messages related to sustainability conveyed by the sports and cultural universe, where emotion is present, may lead to the necessary changes in environmental behavior. Increasing the competence and awareness of clubs and federations and their Cities, with disruptive, innovative and ambitious actions in the field of sustainability of sports and cultural events, is one of our main goals.”

At the end of the project, which ends in May 2025, FC Porto expects to gain sufficient intelligence and knowledge as well as acquire skills to become the beacon of environmental sustainability in Portugal and support members of its network to progress in the field of environmental management after having provoked certain mindsets in how sport events and all the operations around them are organized and governed.

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