Wembley Stadium: Team Engagement

In 2014 Wembley Stadium achieved the highest Creative Industry Green certification, three stars for a second year in a row. James Huartson talks us through their team engagement campaign.

What Sustainability Means to Wembley Stadium

Sustainability is considered integral to our core business strategy. Consequently, we aim to continually improve the Stadium's sustainability performance by identifying, prioritising and managing our venue sustainability impacts through all management levels and through venue event management cycles.

Our sustainability strategy comprises an Environmental Management System (EMS) certified to BS ISO 14OO1:2OO4, and a Sustainable Event Management System (SEMS) consistent with BS ISO2O12:2O12. We are committed to demonstrating leadership in environmental sustainability; as a venue hosting regular and one-off events, we consider sustainability legacy issues and opportunities by supporting event owners to improve the sustainability performance of their events, based on our own experiences. Since 2010 we have been working with our sustainability project managers, Eco-Age, to advance our environmental work.

Getting Everyone on Board with Sustainability

Broadly speaking employees are consulted on sustainability issues through the FA Group Green Team, so that their views are heard and considered at the earliest possible stage. Sustainability is a standing item on the monthly board report. This includes progress on initiatives, energy reports, and details on internal and external communications.

Our work begins at the beginning of employment for all staff. At the induction for new employees the Green Team has a dedicated slot alongside the other crucial training all new starters receive like HR, finance, security and equality. The induction is attended by all new FA staff from all levels of seniority and also includes those who will be based regionally and at St George's Park.

Thousands of staff work in the Stadium on events days. To ensure that all event day staff are aware of the back-of-house recycling system, a five-minute training video has been produced to be shown on all screens in the Stadium an hour before doors open for an event. All contractors on site are requested to ensure that the video is included in their staff briefings on the day. It shows which bins should be used for event-day packaging and waste produced at the Stadium, and also explains what happens to the waste to help staff understand why it needs to be separated. The video was filmed and produced on site which only uses actual members of staff.

After the video was launched, event-day diversion rates reached 86%.

Green Team

Originally, the FA Group Green Team was comprised of heads of departments and representatives from each of the Sub Groups. The Sub Groups themselves were made up of employees from the businesses as well as employees from partner companies and contractors, structured around our key impact areas. In 2014 however the Green Team was updated to ensure that resources continued to be used effectively and efficiently. It was decided that the best way to implement the EMS going forward would be via a single core Green Team, made up of those members of staff who are responsible for EMS targets, and to disband the Sub Groups. Supporting this is the option to call upon Green Team Action Groups to progress specific sustainability issues.

We held the first Green Team Action Group towards the end of last year. It brought together key waste stakeholders from across the business to work on ways to improve the diversion rate (the amount of waste recycled or composted instead of being sent to waste-to-energy). At the Action Group were representatives from events, cleaning contractors, conference and banqueting, facilities, retail and waste management.

Green Week 2014

For 2014, we continued the tradition of organising a Green Week to engage as many staff as possible, and to increase awareness of the Green Team activities taking place across the Stadium. Green Week 2014 was the biggest one yet. Each day focussed on a different key impact area, and we decided to involve local schools in a competition to re-create the three lions from models made out of 100% recycled materials. The four office quads were set against each other in various competitions, culminating in a penalty shoot-out at the end of the week. Appropriately enough the "Green Quad" emerged victorious, and received the honour of donating £500 to their chosen charity.

Highlights from Green Week 2014

Bikers Breakfast and MOT

There is a small but enthusiastic group of staff who cycle to work each day. The most enthusiastic keep cycling right through winter and deserved some kind of reward. In November, Cycle Instructor held a free Dr. Bike session at the Stadium where staff could bring their bike along for an MOT and service. Hospitality staff were on hand to provide bacon rolls and tea to everyone who arrived on bike.

Commuter Fitness Challenge

The fitness levels of the four office quads were pitted against each other in the Commuter Fitness Challenge. Each quad was provided with an exercise bike from the gym and had one hour to cover as much distance as possible in a relay style race. Blue quad claimed victory with 18.2 miles.

Energy Ref

Our Energy Ref campaign has been running each year since 2011. The Energy Referee visits each of the 500+ desks in the offices out of hours and issues a yellow card for a first time offense, e.g. leaving a monitor switched on, and a red card for a second offense. The results were grouped according to each of the four office quadrants and advertised on the intranet and on a poster in each staff kitchen at the end of each week, creating a 'league table' style competition between the office quadrants. Read more about this campaign here.

Results

  • 30% reduction in annual electricity consumption (2007 to 2014)
  • Reduced electricity consumption every year since opening (apart from 2013)
  • Zero waste to landfill.
  • In 2014, 67% of waste was recycled or composted.
  • Wembley is paid a rebate for its recycling due to its high quality.
  • 2014 water consumption was the lowest since the Stadium opened.
  • Five consecutive Industry Green certifications and for the last two years we have received three stars.

In 2014 we achieved our third consecutive certification to the Carbon Trust Standard, having made an absolute reduction in Carbon Emissions, and also became the first sports organisation in the UK to achieve the Carbon Trust treble.

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