Sustainability: The Hornets’ Commitment To Tackling Climate Change

By: Watford FC Staff

Watford FC are delighted to update supporters on our continued efforts in reducing the club’s carbon footprint and tackling climate change.

We are extremely ambitious in our goals to help achieve a sustainable operation across Vicarage Road, the London Colney training ground and our Trust centres, and we believe it’s hugely important to remain collaborative with other organisations.

Focusing on key areas such as renewable energy, waste management and biodiversity, the club’s sustainable efforts within each section are outlined below, with further information available on our brand-new sustainability web page HERE.

We are pleased to let our fans and followers know that a lot of work has already been undertaken to ensure we are continually moving forward in this crucial area for the club and for our planet.

Policies & Commitment

  • The club announced a long-term partnership with leading global energy management and net-zero consultancy company ClearVUE.

  • Recently set up a web page dedicated to sustainability. The page will include updates on the club’s sustainable efforts with policies available to view now on water, energy, environmental, biodiversity, waste management and single-use plastics.

  • Currently applying to be a signatory for the UN Sports for Climate Action Framework.

Renewable Energy

  • The club continue to use renewable electricity at all sites, with solar panel installation now complete at the London Colney training ground.

  • A drone survey on the roofs of the stands at Vicarage Road has been completed to investigate the potential to install solar panels.

  • Commissioned CHP+ (combined heat and power) to utilise the waste heat at the training ground with an additional 1,500 litre water tank and heat exchanger unit for dome heating. This is due for completion in March 2023.

Energy Efficiency

  • The club’s energy efficiency policy can be viewed HERE.

  • ClearVUE’s energy management system has now been integrated into all sites. The analysis and findings from the systems are shared with departments regularly and discussed at monthly sustainability working group meetings.

  • Currently, an estimated 70% of all lighting across sites is LED. The club’s policy is to fit LED lights for all new installations, and old and failed lighting.

Sustainable Transport

  • The club are working with Hertfordshire Council’s Environment and Transport department to form a strategy and management plan to encourage and enable fans to choose lower carbon emitting modes of transport to Vicarage Road.

  • The club continues to advocate trains, London Underground and Overground, over driving.

  • There is no parking available for supporters at the ground and street parking is restricted to local residents with matchday permits as we look to reduce reliance on cars.

Reduction & Removal Of Single-Use Plastic

  • The club’s single-use plastic policy can be viewed HERE. The policy aims to reduce, and ultimately eliminate, the use of single-use plastic products at all sites.

  • The club switched to reusable cups in November 2019.

  • We have eliminated single-use plastic cutlery by switching to wooden alternatives and paper straws.

  • Trial of recycling stations for plastic bottles in April before a stadium-wide roll out.

Waste Management

  • The club’s waste management policy can be viewed HERE.

  • 100% of the club’s waste is diverted from landfill, with general non-recyclable waste sent to incineration for power production.

  • The club is continuing its collaboration with catering partners and waste companies to split and reduce waste, and continue recycling all waste streams.

  • All recyclable waste is separated into cardboard, mixed recycling and food and glass, with recycling stations available in the club’s offices.

  • The club are currently trialling new recycling stations for plastic bottles and mixed recycling in the Rookery Stand’s concourse, before a rollout stadium-wide.

Water Efficiency

  • The club’s water policy can be viewed HERE. The policy aims to drive reduction and conservation.

  • Water-logging devices have been fitted to meters and can now be analysed through ClearVUE’s systems for insights on usage patterns, as well as opportunities for reduction.

  • Monitored and balanced use of the water borehole at the training ground, while the club are continuing to investigate rainwater harvesting systems.

Plant-Based & Low-Carbon Food

  • All food sold at the stadium is sustainably sourced, with vegan options available at kiosks and hospitality. Dishes now include broccoli, cauliflower and cheese pie (ve) and the mushroom-based burger (ve).

  • Cheeseburgers are now 50% mushroom.

  • Training ground food options are mostly sustainably sourced, with vegan options available.


  • The club’s biodiversity policy can be viewed HERE.

  • Partnership with Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust to implement a management plan for all sites to make them nature reserves.

  • Spring and Summer 2023 will see surveys undertaken to investigate the wildlife, vegetation, species and numbers of animals and insects, before implementation of strategies to refrain, reduce, restore and renew.

  • Multiple projects have been delivered via the club’s Trust such as creating a garden space in Adeyfield Academy, local litter picks around community areas and upcycling damaged footballs into hanging baskets.

  • A three-metre border has been implemented around the perimeter of the training ground which will not be cut and will be allowed to grow wild.

  • Hedges at the training ground are to be cut on top, which will allow for growth and fruit-bearing at the side for local wildlife.

  • Through our energy contract, Watford FC contributed via Open Energy Market and Cool Earth’s partnership to protecting 6.40 acres of rainforest in Northern Peru during June 2020.


  • Sessions on global warming, sustainability, recycling and more have been delivered to primary and secondary schools in the local area via the Trust.

  • Alongside the Trust, schools involved have achieved the following:

    • Four pupils have signed up for community social action projects at their local community centre.
    • All pupils have been asked to lead school council termly meetings around climate change, presenting to governors in March.
    • All pupils achieved their school council award (school target of time spent independently learning about the subject).
  • Educational delivery programmes to the club’s employees will also help drive Watford FC’s medium and long-term push to keep developing great habits, which support an increased sustainability profile across the club.

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