Today is Earth Day. One of the pillars of the VUL is sustainability. Lisa Riddle, Vice-President of the VUL Board of Directors has shared her thoughts on sustainability in ultimate. You will want to read her thoughts on the impact of ultimate on the environment, and how we can make the sport more sustainable.
Climate change and the environment are on my mind most days. I worry that my love of sport is having a negative impact on the environment which I also love and which supports the other birds, bugs and animals in our environment.
I am not alone in being concerned that sport has a detrimental impact on the environment. Whether it is travel to our fields and tournaments, the building of fields and facilities, food waste, or our much loved athletic clothing, all have a negative impact on our environment.
Sustainability was a part of the VULS’ last 5 year strategic plan, but in my opinion, we are not doing as much as we could be, to be leaders in this area.
The VULS is building its next strategic plan and I would like us to explore ways in which we can increase the environmental sustainability of our sport. I want your ideas to guide us in this process.
We are the Vancouver Ultimate League Society, but we support leagues in New Westminster, North Vancouver, Richmond and Surrey. I would like to see us find a way to reduce the number of players from New Westminster (as an example) from driving to Vancouver for the league. Could we build up those leagues to the point where people stayed in New Westminster to play? Could we restructure our leagues, so that we had intercommunity tournaments, as an example? Do you have other ideas for how we could build these leagues and communities so that there were less people choosing to drive to Vancouver for games? What are the barriers that keep people from playing in their home communities?
The VULS sells athletic gear and teams buy new jerseys and shorts. We all need to think about whether this is necessary and what types of products we are bringing into our lives. When I quit playing I had so many jerseys (most of which I quickly ‘grew’ out of), that I could not use them all. I kept a few, but most got donated. I can encourage the VULS to think about the companies that they partner with and the environmental footprint of the products that they sell. But, is there something more we could be doing? Is there something more you could be doing? This conversation is one that we must start having and I really want your ideas.
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When Lisa is not on the ultimate field, you can find her working as a lawyer at the Department of Justice and all of her spare time riding horses with her daughter.
To contact Lisa, or our Board of Directors, you can use our Contact page on the VUL website under category "Board of Directors.