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FIFA World Cup

FIFA to Offset 2014 World Cup’s 2.7m Metric Tons of Carbon Emissions

FIFA World CupFIFA expects the 2014 World Cup in Brazil and the Confederations Cup to generate just over 2.7 millions metric tons of CO2e and says it will offset those carbon emissions.

In a blog posting late last week, FIFA secretary general Jérôme Valcke says the world football governing body and World Cup local organizing committee (LOC) worked with experts to estimate the carbon footprint of the two tournaments. The Confederations Cup was held June 15 to 30 as a prelude to next year’s World Cup.

Transportation alone — both international and local — will account for 80.1 percent of the carbon footprint, Valcke writes.

In addition to verified carbon offset projects, Valcke says FIFA will encourage stakeholders to lower their carbon footprints. Valcke doesn’t provide additional details about the carbon offset projects or initiatives to encourage reduced stakeholder CO2 emissions.

Last year FIFA said it will spend $20 million to make the 2014 World Cup in Brazil the first with a comprehensive sustainability strategy that will include “green” stadiums, waste management, community support, reducing and offsetting carbon emissions, renewable energy, climate change and capacity development.

FIFA’s access to the Brazilian Development Bank’s line of credit — FIFA’s funding source for World Cup stadiums — is conditional on a sustainable construction certification standard.

In his blog, Valcke says “preparatory work is continuing at full pace” and that FIFA and the LOC, together with a Brazilian training provider, launched the first sustainability training course for all 12 stadium operators last August in Curitiba. The training, intended to strengthen the participants’ knowledge of sustainable operations at soccer stadiums and other sports facilities, will continue at two more venues this November and in February 2014, Valcke says.

As a result of the voluntary initiatives in the FIFA World Cup stadiums in Brazil, green building certification will be mandatory for all FIFA World Cup stadiums in Russia (2018) and Qatar (2022).

The 2010 World Cup in South Africa featured the Nelson Mandela Stadium, designed and built using sustainable materials such as fiberglass and reinforced concrete. The stadium itself was powered entirely by a nearby wind farm. Still, the 2010 World Cup’s total carbon footprint came to about 2.8 million tons of CO2e, according to a study by Ernst & Young, an eight-fold increase over the previous World Cup in Germany.

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