NHL report finds climate change hurts the sport
Fears about the effects of global warming on ice — and the game of hockey — are spurring the National Hockey League to commit to going green.
The NHL in its second-ever sustainability report, released Wednesday, is embracing a number of efforts to reduce carbon emissions and waste.
“Hockey was born on frozen ponds—climate change is impacting access to our sport outdoors,” the league said, noting that the average length of the skating season may shrink by a third in eastern Canada in coming decades and by 20 percent in western Canada.
It added that hockey “depends on a healthy natural environment and, like most sports, it is resource-intensive.”
“Changing climates, increasing resource constraints, and upcoming regulation impact the hockey industry,” read the report.
The league said it plans to implement LED lighting at all NHL arenas in the next five years, cut down on waste and increase teams’ awareness of measures they can take to improve the environment.
The goals were developed after an internal assessment of the environmental impact of NFL operations and the more than 4,800 indoor ice rinks across North America. They build off those set in the league’s first sustainability report in 2014, which stressed energy reduction, offsetting environmental impacts and inspiring environmental progress.
The league partnered with the National Resources Defense Council, an environmentalist group, in 2008 to develop the NHL Green program, which sparked the sustainability study.
A federal report from 13 agencies released last November determined that humans are the No. 1 cause of climate change, which causes sea level rise, hotter temperatures and agriculture issues.