Water. It’s all about water. Without it, hockey is no more. That is why the NHL is in the fresh water protection business. Their goal is to stop the diminishing supply of fresh water resources, aide in water protection and to restore fresh water supplies. The NHL is the first league to help in the preservation of water. It makes sense, hockey is a water sport of sorts. No water means no back yard ponds to practice on at 6 am in the cold. No arenas to drive to after school. No semi finals anywhere to look forward to!
That is why the NHL is partnering with the Bonneville Environmental Foundation (B.E.F.) in Oregon to promote the “Gallons for Goals” program. For each goal scored during the regular 2014- 2015 season, the NHL will restore 1.000 gallons of water to a dewatered river. The league is also helping with Oregon’s Deschutes River Project. As the whole league is helping, the individual teams are also. During the 2013-2014 season, the New Jersey Devils planted a tree in a park for every game they won. The project was called “Pucks for Parks”. The list of teams and their local projects are many, so you might want to check on the team’s website for information.
This brings me to the 2014 NHL Sustainability Report. It is out and readable to fans everywhere! The major goal is to decrease the overall footprint of the NHL. It reads that this can be done by commitment and inspiration to fans and others relating to the league.
The NHL has partnered with many different groups and non-profits to help with environmental and social problems in different areas. Groups like Beyond Sport, Energy Star, the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC), Green Sports, Green Sports Alliance (GSA) are just a few examples of a lengthy list.
When I first started this column I thought I might be able to write a line or two about the NHL and the word “green!” Boy, this column has been an eye-opener even to me! I did not think that the NHL was and is on the same page as most of their fans. It looks good on the multi-billion dollar corporation and its’ players. It brings them down to earth a bit more.
As I continue to look into the green NHL I came to a stat that I figured you all might want to read. Hockey is full of stats but this one is a bit mind-blowing. In the 2013-2014 season the league decreased their carbon footprint; 38 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions were offset. That is like taking 3,591 cars off the U.S. roads for one year, a truly impressive statistic for one season.
The NHL has surprised me with their green projects, their outreach and their desire to help our planet. To the NHL thanks and keep up the “green” stats!