Press Release September 2005 - Football World Cup Scores Green Goal - United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)
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Football World Cup Scores Green Goal

The United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the Competition Organisers sign historic partnership agreement

Nairobi, 6 September 2005 – A 'green team' will be taking part in next year's World Cup to ensure that football's top tournament is the most environmentally-friendly ever.

Today an agreement was signed between the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the organisers of the 2006 World Cup and the German Ferderal Government, aimed at making the World Cup a low pollution, eco-friendly competition.

Klaus Toepfer, UNEP's Executive Director, said:" "This is the first time that the world's leading sports event – the FIFA World Cup – has incorporated environmental considerations in the preparation and staging of its games. There is an increasing realisation by organisers of major sports events that they must seriously integrate the impact of their events on the environment."

"The Green Goal initiative is one of the most comprehensive programmes seeking to reduce the environmental impact of sport, and I would like to congratulate the 2006 FIFA World Cup Organising Committee for this pioneering initiative, and for its commitment to the environment."

The agreement was signed by the German Federal Environment Minister Jürgen Trittin, UNEP Executive Director Klaus Töpfer and World Cup Organising Committee (OC) senior vice-president Horst R. Schmidt in Berlin on Tuesday.

Under the agreement, UNEP will provide technical and communications support to the OC aimed at seamlessly integrating environmental considerations and projects with preparations for the 2006 FIFA World Cup™, and the staging of the tournament itself.

UNEP will support the Organising Committee in developing Public Service Announcements (PSAs) to be broadcast on local, national and international television stations to stimulate environmental action and provide information on the Green Goal project. Environmental messages will also appear on public transport and billboards in the hosting cities, as well as on scoreboards during the matches themselves.

A 2-day conference on "Sport Events and Sustainable Development" will be organised in Munich Stadium in early 2006. During the FIFA 2006 World Cup there will be a special information day dedicated to the Green Goal, with press conferences and other events. UNEP and the OC will also develop a brochure on the Green Goal initiative, as well as individual brochures for media and commentators outlining the environmental merits and achievements of each of the hosting stadia and cities in Germany.

Töpfer named Green Goal Ambassador

UNEP Executive Director Klaus Töpfer will assume a high-profile personal role as the first Green Goal Ambassador, lending weight to the eco-friendly profile of the tournament and opening up a range of contacts with environmental institutes around the world.

"We are delighted that Klaus Töpfer, a leading personality in the world of environmental protection, has chosen to join the ranks of our international FIFA World Cup Ambassadors. His personal commitment indicates we were entirely justified in incorporating environmental considerations in our plans for the 2006 FIFA World Cup," commented OC President Franz Beckenbauer.

First-ever 'climate neutral' FIFA World Cup

The 2006 FIFA World Cup is well on the way to becoming the first-ever 'climate neutral' FIFA World Cup finals. The German Football Association (DFB) is to invest €500,000 in a comprehensive aid programme in Tamil Nadu, a region of India seriously affected by the tsunami disaster. A central component of the programme compensates for the first third of an incremental 100,000 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions forecast to be generated in Germany by increased traffic volumes at the finals.

"The programme represents a major contribution to the most demanding target set by Green Goal, specifically to host the first climate-neutral finals in the history of the event. We hope our initial commitment inspires new partners to join in with similar activities, and share the responsibility of ensuring that the 2006 FIFA World Cup leaves behind a lasting legacy," commented Horst R. Schmidt.

What is Green Goal?

On top of the requirements laid down by FIFA, the DFB and the 2006 FIFA World Cup OC voluntarily committed to host a tournament which fulfilled environmentally-conscious objectives. The Green Goal initiative was established to meet this aim. Green Goal™ incorporates measurable environmental targets in four key areas: water, refuse, energy and mobility. The headline target is the organisation of a climate-neutral FIFA World Cup

Notes for Editors:

UNEP has developed an active Sport and Environment Programme to promote the links between sport and the environment. In February 2003 the UNEP Governing Council adopted a long-term strategy on sport and the environment, which seeks to further reinforce UNEP’s work in this field. The strategy also seeks to strengthen partnerships with sports organizations and federations such as FIFA and the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The next IOC World Conference on Sport and Environment will take place in November 2005 in Nairobi, Kenya, at UNEP’s global headquarters.

For more information about UNEP's Sport and the Environment Programme, please visit

For further information, please contact: Nick Nuttall, UNEP Spokesperson, Office of the Executive Director, on Tel: +254 20 62 3084; Mobile: +254 733 632 755, E-mail:

If there is no prompt response, please contact Elisabeth Waechter, UNEP Associate Media Officer, on Tel: 254 20 623088, Mobile: 254 720 173968, E-mail:

for the 2006 FIFA World Cup Organising Committee

Jens Grittner , Media Officer, Tel.+49 69 / 2006 – 2622, Mobile +49 160 / 7450074,; or Gerd Graus, Media Officer, Tel. +49 69 / 2006 – 2660, Mobile +49 160 / 7450260,

UNEP News Release 2005/43




Further Resources

UNEP Sport and Environment Programme

FIFA World Cup Germany 2006
Official web site

Basel Agency for Sustainable Energy (BASE)



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