Increasing carbon footprint needs to be tackled by authorities

icons abroad7 April ~ On the face of it, football’s impact on the natural environment would seem to be minimal. However, with the increased effects of travel, the use of electricity in producing and watching TV coverage, ground maintenance, the making of football equipment and even the food eaten in stadiums, the game’s carbon footprint is continually increasing. As with every other area of ours lives, it’s important to try to mitigate this, as Toby Miller has suggested in a blog for the Football Supporters’ Federation.

While Germany’s 2006 World Cup was supposedly carbon neutral, South Africa 2010 had the largest carbon footprint of any commercial event in the world and the figures for 2014 ignored the biggest cause of carbon emissions – transport for the 3.5 million tourists. There is also the impact that following football via mobile phone data has, multiplying their carbon output tenfold when compared to viewing on televisions or via WiFi.

Another issue, particularly for lower-league fans, is the lack of convenient, affordable transport to domestic matches. This increases car use, damaging the environment further. This is where the Campaign for Better Transport comes in. They have suggested following Germany’s model of discounted or free public transport, car sharing and a national Football Supporters’ Railcard. Whether it is through these methods or others, Toby argues, football needs to start taking responsibility for its environment impact.

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