Greening World Cup Tournament 2006
Environment Leaves Long-Lasting Legacy on Current and Future FIFA World Cups
Rooney to Ronaldinho Enjoy Climate-Friendly Tournament in 2006 Courtesy of Pioneering ‘Carbon Offsets’ in Asia and Africa
Lausanne/ Nairobi, 1 December 2006--Environmental considerations are now firmly part of the World Cup team as a result of measures taken to green the 2006 tournament, the head of the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) said today.
Speaking at the launch of a final report on the achievements of the ‘Green Goal’, an initiative undertaken by the German organizers of this year’s FIFA 2006 World Cup, Achim Steiner said:” The German Local Organizing Committee have put down a clear and unequivocal environmental foundation from which future host countries can now build”.
“Unlike the Olympics, the environment has been something of an outsider at World Cups but this has now changed and to my mind there is no going back. Organizers of future FIFA World Cup events will now have to consider playing the environment up front as one of the leading strikers in their planning and policy strategies. Otherwise they risk own goals and off-sides from domestic and international public opinion,” added the UN Under-Secretary General and UNEP Executive Director.
The legacy report on ‘Green Goal’ highlights how—through a range of domestic measures including the deployment of renewable energy at stadia and boosting the use of public and non-motorized transport by fans—significant greenhouse gas emission reductions were achieved.
Indeed the 30-day tournament will go down in history as the first ‘climate neutral’ World Cup the report indicates.
In addition to domestic climate friendly measures, the Organizers offset rises in emissions in Germany through support of clean energy schemes in India and South Africa—the host country for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
The final report showed that the amount of greenhouse gases saved by these combined actions more than compensated for the emissions generated by the tournament—so much so that the flights to and from Germany by stars like Rooney and Ronaldinho and FIFA officials were also offset.
Mr Steiner, who was in Lausanne, Switzerland, for the Global Forum for Sport and Environment conference, said:” UNEP has been proud to have been associated with the ‘Green Goal’ and not just for its achievement on climate but for its achievements in areas from waste avoidance to the harvesting of rainwater for pitches. We stand ready to assist the organizers of the 2010 tournament in South Africa score their own Green Goals and in doing so send a clear signal to organizers of all mass audience events that environment deserves top billing—is no longer a support act but a big draw in its own right”.
Horst Schmidt, Senior Vice-President of the Organizing Committee, said: “We are proud to present the results achieved by the Green Goal. They demonstrate that Germany grasped the opportunity to present itself as a country that is friendly towards guests, keen on sport and environmentally aware”.
“We hope that the organizers of large sporting events in the future will further optimise Green Goal and that environmental protection will be a firmly established, integral part of the FIFA World Cup wherever the tournament is organized,” he added.
The final report has been compiled by the Oeko Institute, an independent body that advised the German 2006 Local Organizing Committee with the support of the German Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety.
Among the report’s recommendations
• FIFA should take a leaf out of the International Olympic Committee’s well established policy of including the environment in the bidding applications of countries competing to host the event—other football organizers, like UEFA and its EURO championships, should also consider such measures.
“Green Goal has show how particularly important it is to take account of environmental guidelines and objectives in the planning of stadium infrastructure” rather than trying to retrofit them after construction.
• Future World Cups should take into the wider environmental impacts. “The 2006 World Cup showed, better than any previous World Cup, that football festivities are no longer restricted to stadiums. Future environmental concepts will have to take account also of open-air, public viewing events and designated ‘fan routes’ to stadium”.
• ‘Gold Standard’ carbon offsets offer a way of overcoming one of the biggest challenges facing World Cup organizers—namely transport emissions. Unlike the Olympics, the football matches take place at numerous stadia spread across relatively large geographical distances.
• Football associations travelling to World Cups should also factor in their environmental footprint especially that linked with air travel to and from the host country.
• Official and national partners and suppliers such as sponsors, providers of courtesy cars, caterers and manufacturers of merchandise like scarves and footballs can be part the environmental success story if they have clear up front guidelines and early involvement.
• Monitoring of environmental performance and well drafted environmental awareness and communications campaigns should be an integral part of future World Cup strategies.
Some highlights from the Green Goal Report
Climate Change—Without the measures enshrined in the Green Goal, greenhouse gas emissions would have been equivalent to 114,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide with as much as 90,000 tonnes of this generated by transport within Germany.
The Green Goal managed to cut electricity emissions from an estimated 7,540 tonnes to 2,490 tonnes and transport emissions from 90,000 tonnes to 73,000 tonnes. Overall, the emissions from the World Cup were equivalent to 92,000 tonnes.
The Organizers in addition purchased 500,000 Euros-worth of carbon offsets in India where 900 farmers an their families in Tamil Nadu are getting biogas cooking fuel from cow dung in stead of using fuel wood or fossil fuels.
Offsets also came from investments in South Africa with financing from FIFA, Deutsche Telecom and PlasticsEurope in a sewage gas project in Sebokeng Township near Johannesburg and a sawdust-fuelled fruit drying furnace in Letaba, northern South Africa.
These offsets saved an estimated 100,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide entering the global atmosphere.
Christian Hockfeld of the Oeko Institute said: “That means that at the end we over-compensated the additional emissions in Germany by 8,000 tonnes. It means that the Green Goal actually went further than we had planned by also compensating for the estimated 5,100 tonnes as a result of international travel by teams and officials”.
Waste-Campaigns like ‘Put it in a Roll’, aimed at minimizing packaging wastes like cardboard and paper serviettes, and the deployment of a returnable beaker called the ‘Cup o the Cup’ played their part in cutting rubbish levels close to the target.
The organizer’s set a target of reducing wastes in and around stadia by 20 per cent. “Quantifiable reductions amounted to more than 17 per cent,” says the report.
Water-the Organizer’s set a target to reduce water consumption at grounds by 20 per cent. This says the report was largely achieved by measures such as water-saving toilets and the deployment of dry urinals at some stadiums.
Rainwater harvesting systems were also installed at grounds including Berlin, Nuremberg and Stuttgart.
Transport—the Organizer’s set themselves a target that 50 per cent of journeys to and from stadia should be by public transport. The target was surpassed with 57 per cent of journeys occurring by public transport and with a further six per cent travelling on foot and 11 per cent travelling by coach.
Energy—the energy target, set to deliver a 20 per cent reduction in energy consumption at World Cup stadia, was not met despite measures including heat insulation at Stuttgart and installation of solar power amounting to 2.5 million kWh of electricity at sites including Kaiserslautern and Dortmund.
Thirteen million kWh of certified green electricity from hydropower was also purchased. In the end energy consumption reductions amounted to just 13 per cent.
However, the report notes that new solar power installations will leave a positive legacy. Within the next five years they should cover the total energy requirement of the 2006 World Cup.
Notes to Editors
The FIFA 2006 World Cup Green Goal Legacy Report can be found today at www.unep.org
The report was launched at a meeting of the Global Forum for Sport and the Environment taking place at the Olympic Museum Lausanne, Switzerland. Full details of the conference and UNEP’s sport and environment programme can be found at www.unep.org/sport_env
UNEP became involved in the Green Goal via its former Executive Director, Klaus Toepfer, who was the initiative’s Green Goal Ambassador.
For More Information Please Contact Nick Nuttall, UNEP Spokesperson, on Tel: +41 79 596 57 37, E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org
UNEP News Release 2006-60