Energy reduction saves emissions and cash

Energy reduction saves emissions and cash

Meet the sports group putting environmental goals into action.

North Harbour Hockey Association (NHHA) delivers hockey services to 4,500 hockey players and 7,000 whānau in the North Harbour region of Auckland.

In addition to its primary function of managing sporting activities, the association has set big goals around social, financial and environmental sustainability to improve its resilience, says the associations’ CEO Michelle Bentham.

“We believe we have a long-term responsibility to deliver sustainable, regenerative, and impactful services to benefit our players, our local and national community, as well as the local and global natural environment for present and future generations.”

In 2019, NHHA moved into the National Hockey Centre at Rosedale Park near Albany. The centre is the home of the Black Sticks and the national facility for international hockey events. The association is working closely with mana whenua to care for the surrounding land and its people.

“We recognise that increasing environmental wellbeing and social justice will help us decarbonise and offer a better service for future generations of people that might use the facilities.”

However, knowing what to do and where to start were massive challenges, says Michelle.

“SBN’s free online tools and resources, like the Climate Action Toolbox, helped us get things off the ground and create a seven-year sustainability plan. It was a trusted source of information and saved us time and money.

“Our main aims are to be waste zero by 2027 and decarbonised by 2030. We’ve also got a major project to restore Rosedale Park with the aim to become Aotearoa’s first climate positive regenerative urban restoration.”

The Toolbox identified key areas for decarbonising and reducing waste, electricity and water. It then provided guidelines on what actions to take.

“Reducing our electricity was difficult. We were using a lot for lighting our turfs. We’ve now found ways to reduce our power use which are saving us over $6,000 per year.”  

To cut down on waste, NHHA is changing its procurement policy to encourage suppliers to reduce waste from their products and services. Another priority is to change people’s behaviour around sorting waste and recycling.

NHHA believes that SMEs and the sports sector have strong roles to play in mitigating climate change.