Making an impact

SailGP’s inaugural Purpose & Impact Report has been released, showcasing the environmental and social successes and challenges faced in its second season.

04 October 2022


SailGP’s Purpose & Impact Report underpins SailGP’s ongoing commitment to embed sustainability and social diversity into the fabric of sport.

It’s been developed to transparently report on progress and inspire other sporting properties and businesses to take action.

A standout moment for SailGP has been the introduction of its ground-breaking Impact League – a second leaderboard which runs alongside the Season Championship and rewards teams for the positive actions they take to reduce their overall carbon footprint and accelerate inclusivity.

Sport’s first podium for the planet, New Zealand was the inaugural Impact League champion in Season 2, earning prize money for its Race For The Future charity partner Live Ocean Foundation, funding research into kelp forests and their regeneration.


Prize money was also allocated to the purpose partners of second place, Great Britain (STEM Crew) and third place, Australia (Parley for the Oceans).

Other key achievements in Season 2 include achieving the sport’s first 100-percent clean energy event at the ROCKWOOL Denmark Sail Grand Prix in Aarhus.

SailGP also reduced total emissions from temporary power provisions by 56 percent through its partnership with Aggreko, a world-leading provider of mobile modular power.

By leveraging fossil fuel alternatives in both land and sea transport through its partnership with global logistics company Kuehne+Nagel, SailGP reduced emissions on the European leg of the Championship by 90 percent.

The partnership also enabled SailGP to avoid approximately 340 tonnes of CO²e on the shipping from Cádiz to Sydney and onto San Francisco.

“SailGP is designed to be so much more than a sailing league – I believe sport has the unique power to drive positive change which is why we strive to embed sustainability into the heart of our league,” said SailGP CEO, Sir Russell Coutts.

“After just our second season I’m very proud of what we have achieved so far – making significant strides for social and environmental sustainability with the likes of the world-first Impact League.

“We still have a long way to go, but through our reporting structure and processes we aim to keep ourselves accountable and share key learnings to the wider industry about where we need to improve as this, along with collaboration, is the only way progress is possible.”

Also introduced at the start of Season 2 was SailGP’s Women’s Pathway, which aims to fast-track women’s training and development to create a sporting championship that has gender equity at its heart.

The Spain Sail Grand Prix in Cádiz in October 2021 was a milestone event, being the first time female athletes raced onboard all F50s. Since then, female athletes have raced on all SailGP teams in 100 percent of races.

“We have a very clear purpose – we race for a better sport and a better planet, and this underpins everything we do,” said SailGP Global Director of Purpose and Impact, Fiona Morgan.

“We have set an ambition to be the world’s most sustainable and purpose-driven global sports league and this report is the latest example of our commitment to this and how everyone at SailGP is always pushing themselves to be better in everything we do, and analysing how we can improve year-on-year.

“It’s great to have delivered our first 100 percent clean energy event and the reaction to initiatives like the Impact League and Women’s Pathway have been overwhelmingly positive and have driven real business growth.

“Collaboration is key to delivering our goals and I want to thank all our partners, suppliers and host cities for their support. However, we are only at the start of our purpose and impact journey.

“We believe in the power of using our sport for good and the power of nature to change the world. I am truly excited about the future and hope we can inspire others too.”

Sports for Climate Action Lead at UN Climate Change, Lindita Xhaferi-Salihu said: “SailGP has set clear, ambitious goals and found inventive and effective ways to ingrain sustainability into the organisation and competition, engaging with athletes, operations, decision makers and fans.”

The Purpose & Impact Report was supported and verified by SailGP’s long-term strategic sustainability partner, Dr Susie Tomson, the Director of Sustainability at thinkBeyond.

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