Like oil and water, it was once believed that sport facilities and environmentally friendly regulations just don’t mix. With all the water, fertilizer, and energy spent on upkeep, it seemed near impossible to limit unrecycled waste. But one brand made a commitment to fight that stereotype and is already making promising strides in the fight against unrecycled waste in sports.

Early this year, adidas announced it was opening the brand’s first sustainable football field, made with Parley Ocean Plastic, at Miami Edison Senior High School in Miami, FL.

Parley Ocean Plastic is created from upcycled plastic waste, which is intercepted and collected from remote islands, beaches, coastal communities, and shorelines to prevent it from polluting our oceans. adidas wants that plastic to be reused and they announced that approximately 1.8 million recycled plastic bottles were utilized to help create the field that will serve not only Edison High, but the wider Liberty City community.

“We believe that, through sport, we have the power to change lives, and this field is a demonstration of our taking action on that belief,” said Cameron Collins, Director of Football, adidas North America. “(It’s) more than a place for these young athletes to play, it’s a reminder of our collective responsibility to end plastic waste.”

The multipurpose field will be officially unveiled with a celebratory 7-on-7 football tournament for high school athletes, who will also get the opportunity to debut the environmentally friendly adidas Adizero x Parley cleats, made with Parley Ocean Plastic.

Along with introducing new, eco-friendly products, adidas has pledged to continue to be a driving force in the fight against ending plastic waste. Here is what the brand plans to roll out over the next decade plus:

  • 2020: more than 50 percent of all the polyester adidas uses in products will be recycled.
  • 2021: adidas will work with key US sports partners (MLS, NHL, USA Volleyball, and the Power 5 NCAA football programs) to transition to more sustainable uniforms.
  • 2024: adidas will use only recycled polyester in all adidas products across the business – aided by the introduction of PRIMEBLUE and PRIMEGREEN performance fabrics where 100% of the polyester used is recycled.
  • 2030: adidas will reduce the company’s carbon footprint by 30 percent (as compared to 2017) as part of the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action.
  • 2050: achieve climate neutrality. In Germany, the company already sources almost all its electricity from renewable sources.

“Since 1998, we’ve been developing and introducing innovations to end plastic waste,” said James Carnes, VP Brand Strategy. “Our commitment to eliminate the use of virgin polyester in our products by 2024 helps us get one step closer to being a more circular company.”

Curious about a more sustainable world through sport? Check out adidas.com/sustainability for more info!