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Our Team Captain Emilie Bølviken was a panelist at UEFA’s circular economy guidelines launch. Emilie’s participation brought a player’s perspective into a conversation that supported the idea that all European football must become sustainable and set the standard for the rest of the global football ecosystem.
This event held at the UEFA HQ in Nyon, Switzerland commemorated the guidelines that UEFA will send to national associations, leagues, clubs, sponsors, event organizers, and other football stakeholders to reach their ambition of zero plastic and food waste across all European football by 2030. Other phases of the circularity guidelines include football garments and shoes, resources and energy, and event materials.
Joining Emilie in the panel were Michele Uva, UEFA’s director of football & social responsibility, Charlie Marshall, CEO of the European Club Association, Katharina Stenholm, senior vice-president & chief sustainability officer of PepsiCo Europe, Emmanuelle Maire, head of the circular economy unit directorate-general for the environment for the European Commission, Anders Kjaer, FSR manager for the Danish Football Association, Ricardo Carvalho, sports facilities & asset manager for FC Porto, and Vincent Reulet, FSR environment expert for UEFA.
The purpose of the panel was to discuss the roles each stakeholder, sponsor, venue, club, and player has in implementing circularity and how to enforce that. Though most panelists touched on the practical solutions to implementing this, it was unanimous that European Football can be the messenger and leads by example to the rest of the global football ecosystem.
“To turn things around, us players have a role to play in bringing our communities together and creating a strong message for the green shift. ”— Emilie
Emilie’s player perspective highlighted the invaluable and inherent reach and influence players have on and off the pitch within their local communities.
Our WPG Green bag was introduced as a practical solution to tackling football garment circularity, but also as a campaign platform that supports a sustainable and circular mindset. If UEFA’s circular guidelines and the latest science have demonstrated anything, it’s that we all must Reduce Reuse Recycle, and Recover. Therefore, this requires sustainable solutions and a shift into sustainable mindsets.
It was made quite clear throughout the discussion between stakeholders, sponsors, clubs, governments, and institutions that everyone has a role to play. As well mentioned by Emilie “Football has a unique way of connecting people. No matter where you’re at, start to use your voice and you can create a green chain reaction with those around you. No one is perfect, but that should not prevent us from starting”.