Red Sox and Aspiration making Fenway a little greener
America’s oldest ballpark will become the first one to go green. The Boston Red Sox just signed a new deal with Aspiration, a climate finance company focused on sustainability. Aspiration will serve as the team’s official sustainability provider.
"“It’s really hard to tackle renovations at a 100-year-old ballpark. That’s why we’ve been so focused on sustainability in all of our operations,” said Sam Kennedy, President and CEO of the Red Sox, in an interview with Yahoo Finance. “Now, we’re contributing on behalf of every single fan that comes into our ballpark in 2022 and beyond.”"
The new partnership entails the Red Sox donating a portion of each ticket sold to games at Fenway Park to Aspiration to purchase carbon credits. Those credits will be used to offset electricity, water, and gas usage from fans traveling to the ballpark. I think this is a great initiative and very forward-thinking by Red Sox management.
"“The planet protection contributions [will] go to fund high quality nature-based offsets that are in carbon credits that are being created in places around the world, whether it’s planting trees in the Amazon region or in Africa, whether it’s soil enhancement operations, whether it’s wind, and other things that are having additional positive impact that’s reducing carbon from the atmosphere… so, this is real, verified projects that are going to have a measurable impact,” said Andrei Cherny, Aspiration CEO."
After conducting some research, I found out that Aspiration is an online banking system based out of Los Angeles. Every time you swipe your card to pay for items, they donate 10% of every dollar to charities of your choice. They also do not use the money when you swipe your card to fund oil pipelines as most Big Banks do.
The Red Sox have been at the forefront of sustainability efforts across Major League Baseball over the years. Back in June 2018, I remember seeing solar panels and a garden on a tour that my buddies took me on during my bachelor party. I learned that they installed those solar panels back in 2008, making them the first team across baseball to do so.
Seven years ago the garden was planted above the third base deck and has since been used to serve food to fans at the concession stands. The tour guide also told us that the team was very proud of the recycling program they instituted years ago.
Aspiration’s partnership with the Red Sox isn’t the first one for the company with a professional sports team. Last fall, they signed a 23-year sponsorship with the Los Angeles Clippers worth $300 million. The Clippers are using that partnership to operate their arena completely carbon-free. I believe that is what Sam Kennedy and the Red Sox want to establish eventually with Fenway Park.
"Cherny added, “we’re honored to partner with the Red Sox in this effort to bring easy, automated climate impact to every fan that walks into Fenway Park and are excited to set a new standard for climate accountability in sports.”"
I hope fans feel they are making a difference in our world every time they purchase tickets to a game. It is just another reason to get out to the park this summer and see the 2022 Red Sox in action. Bring the whole family out and get ready to sing Sweet Caroline on top of the Green Monster, and know that it will be just a little bit greener this time around.