Qatar Stars League plans to take sports to new horizons through carbon neutrality with GORD.
Boosting collective efforts to achieve sustainable development, Qatar Stars League (QSL) and Gulf Organisation for Research & Development (GORD) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) on Monday. Happening a day ahead of Qatar National Sports Day 2020, the signing ceremony took place on February 10 at QSL headquarter in the presence of media representatives and senior leadership from the partnering organizations. Behind this MoU is QSL’s vision to become a carbon neutral league in line with Qatar National Vision 2030, as well as the country’s commitment to organize fully carbon neutral FIFA World Cup in Qatar in 2022.
The agreement was inked by Mr. Hani Taleb Ballan, CEO of QSL and Dr. Yousef Alhorr, Founding Chairman of GORD. Through this MoU, the organizations plan to work towards multiple areas of cooperation. As the sustainability leader driving climate actions in the region, GORD will assist QSL in accounting, curbing and offsetting carbon footprints.
This will be made possible by working to reduce GHG emissions in QSL’s sport events and QSL offices, as well as offsetting unavoidable GHG emissions through the use of high quality Qatari carbon credits issued by Global Carbon Council (GCC) – an initiative of GORD and MENA region’s first and only voluntary carbon offsetting and carbon registry platform.
Sharing a joint agenda to foster sustainability in line with Qatar National Vision 2030, the two organizations intend to arrange a series of activities to promote awareness on best practices for environmental conservation.
Benefiting from GORD’s expertise as the developer and evaluator of green building certifications, QSL will be implementing the Global Sustainability Assessment System (GSAS), the green building rating system for operations in its venues and facilities. As such, it is significant to declare that the league is headquartered in Al Bidda Tower that boasts of being the first office tower in the country to receive the GSAS Operations certificate with platinum rating.
Commenting on the initiative, Mr. Hani Taleb Ballan appreciated GORD for its role in promoting activities aimed at combating climate change, preserving the environment and encouraging best sustainability practices. He highlighted that the partnership originated from QSL’s keenness to serve the community by developing working mechanisms aimed at attaining common goals. The aim of this collaboration, he added, is to create a model demonstrating the transformation of a sports organization and how this change can impact the wider community, present and future generations. Mr. Ballan also acknowledged GORD’s efforts in steering the country towards sustainable development. Praising GORD’s work in sustainability landscape, he said that the organization has earned the trust of leading companies and stakeholders responsible for top projects such as the 2022 World Cup stadiums.
Speaking on the sidelines of the event, Dr. Yousef Alhorr said, “Sustainability as we know is no longer a passing trend. It is a pressing need of the day. Like other industries, sports sector has also realized the immense potential green practices hold. Today, we are honored to collaborate with Qatar Stars League, and have no doubt in its transformative power. We are positive that this partnership will reap great rewards not just for the sports community but the entire society at large.”
Mr. Ahmed Khellil Abbassi, Executive Director of Competitions and Football Development at QSL, said, “In alignment with the Qatar National Vision 2030, at QSL, we take the environmental crisis seriously, acknowledge our ecological responsibility, and address it by taking actions that preserve the environment, promote sustainability and apply best practices to create a better future for generations to come through the passion for football. We seek to reach our goal of being the best league on and off the field and part of it is becoming the first league in the world to be carbon neutral to inspire other leagues, federations, sport clubs and organizations in Qatar and around the World to follow.”
GORD-QSL MoU comes against a backdrop of global sporting organizations pushing for greater environmental responsibility and superior sustainability standards. Amidst the international discourse around climate change and carbon neutrality, stadiums across the world are increasingly being designed, constructed and operated in an environmentally responsible manner. In the same vein, the global sporting goods industry is making a transition into ecofriendly sourcing alternatives among other sustainable practices.
Driven by its mission to develop the regional football scene, QSL manages 12 professional football clubs. GORD, on the other hand, leads the sustainability milieu through knowledge dissemination, capacity building, R&D and sustainability certifications. With the strategic relationship now formalized, partnership between GORD and QSL is expected to bring to the fore a range of joint ventures in areas of sports and the built environment.
11 February 2020