Case study: Tottenham Hotspur

As one of 10:10’s first signups, Spurs weren’t afraid to apply their famous attacking style to the club’s carbon footprint.

Tottenham Hotspur FC: 14%

The English football season runs from August to May. It’s always seemed like a strange way of doing things, especially since the English grass-growing season runs from May to August.

For large clubs like Tottenham Hotspur this means a hefty electricity bill – they rely on high-powered sun lamps to keep the turf in Premier League condition throughout the year, while  giant banks of floodlights are needed to illuminate the action on gloomy winter days.

So when Spurs joined 10:10, their lighting was first in line for an overhaul. The club replaced 136 lights with energy-efficient models – a six figure investment that has made them around 25% cheaper to run.

They also experimented with new lighting controls, including time switches at the training ground and motion sensors dotted around the stadium. These had to be removed from the team dressing rooms, however, after showering players were repeatedly plunged into darkness!

Heating controls, including those on the tireless training-ground washing machines, got a downwards nudge, while push taps in toilets helped save energy and water.

Travel

With thousands of potential opponents around the world and success rewarded with ever more overseas fixtures, travel is a difficult area for football clubs to tackle. Spurs have made some progress though.

Together, these changes have cut more than 400 tonnes of carbon in a single year

Promising young players are now spotted and recruited by people in situ rather than by jet-setting talent scouts, and directors take public transport to away games. Under this scheme, short-haul flights have dropped dramatically. Fans are playing their part too – after a big publicity push just 25% now travel to matches by car, down from a peak of 36%.

Team spirit

Together, these changes have cut more than 400 tonnes of carbon in a single year – 14% of the club’s total emissions. But equally impressive is the club’s commitment to the spirit of the project.

From a dedicated 10:10 tips page in matchday programmes to head chef Stephen Hurley’s local food fixation, Spurs have shown just as much appetite for action in the harder-to-measure areas.