Atlanta United, Major League Soccer Celebrate Earth Day with Fourth Annual Greener Goals Week of Service
Monday, April 15th, 2019
MLS WORKS, Major League Soccer’s social responsibility platform, announced that the fourth annual Greener Goals Week of Service will begin this week and continue through Earth Day. MLS clubs and League office staff will volunteer their time and give back in partnership with local charitable organizations.
Atlanta United’s projects for the 2019 season will focus on food sustainability, taking a closer look at the life cycle of food from beginning to end. The projects are located in areas where Atlanta United players work and live at and are mainly partnered with schools to educate students about the impact of food on the environment, including events at the Georgia Aquarium, Mercedes-Benz Stadium and Marietta Sixth Grade Academy.
As part of MLS WORKS Greener Goals Week of Service, for the third consecutive year, all 24 MLS clubs will be wearing special adidas x Parley eco-friendly kits during Earth Day weekend (April 19-21). These innovative kits, built with Climalite technology, are made from technical yarns comprised of Parley Ocean Plastic™. As part of the global adidas x Parley initiative, plastic waste collected on beaches and in coastal communities is transformed into high-performance sportswear. The collaboration between MLS, adidas and Parley for the Oceans also serves to encourage fans to decrease their use of single-use plastics and reinforce the importance of changing human attitude and behavior towards plastic pollution through the Parley AIR Strategy: Avoid. Intercept. Redesign.
To drive additional awareness for the cause, adidas will also launch a grassroots educational effort with MLS Academy clubs beginning on Earth Day where teams will have a chance to win a set of adidas x MLS x Parley kits for their clubs.
MLS WORKS Greener Goals identifies ways to reduce the League’s greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint and raise awareness about environmental issues throughout the soccer community. The greening of our game will encourage MLS clubs, players, partners and fans to create a cleaner, healthier environment.
MLS has committed to measure, reduce and offset the League’s GHG emissions and promote healthy, sustainable communities throughout the United States and Canada, and areas in need throughout the rest of the world. As part of 2019 efforts, MLS will be offsetting emissions associated with club travel for the entire MLS regular season including flights, ground transportation and accommodation, totaling approximately 14,500 tons of CO2e. In 2018 MLS compensated 5,400 tons of CO2e associated with hotel accommodations, ground transportation, staff, player, executive and MLS guest travel, and stadium operations as part of MLS All-Star Week and MLS Cup in Atlanta, in addition to player travel during the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs.
MLS is partnering with South Pole and Sport and Sustainability International to offset its CO2e by investing in high-quality carbon credits issued from the distribution of emissions-reducing, life-improving cookstoves throughout communities in Kenya. To date, MLS' investment has created tangible, constructive impacts for local communities that were generated by the distribution of 4,407 improved cookstoves in rural communities in Kenya. As of October 2018, the use of these cookstoves are estimated to have positively impacted the lives and well-being of 14,000 women and children.
Each Parley jersey that the clubs will wear on Earth Day weekend is crafted using threads made from upcycled plastic waste intercepted by Parley from remote islands, shorelines, and in coastal communities. Once collected, the original plastic source is reworked into technical fibers that can then be repurposed for use in either apparel or footwear. To commemorate this and celebrate the importance of our oceans, which generate 50 to 85 percent of the air we breathe, the message “For the Oceans” is featured in the inside of the neck tape detailing, and each club’s name is featured on the back-neck. This year’s jerseys are in bold Blue Spirit and Legend Ink to represent the depth of the oceans.