National football body commissions carbon footprint measurement and commits to strategy to reduce its negative climate impact
The German Football Association (DFB) has become the first national football body to adopt the UNFCCC’s Sports for Climate Action Framework, becoming the 100th sport organisation to do so in the process.
President of the German Football Association, Fritz Keller, and its general secretary Dr Friedrich Curtius committed the organisation to the framework during an official signing in the German city of Frankfurt, where the association is based.
Climate action already forms part of the organisation’s strategy, with projects related to greenhouse gas emissions reduction and decreasing water and paper consumption underway.
The association’s headquarters will transition to solar energy, and will be revamped with energy-efficient LED lights, a rainwater collection system and electric car charging points.
“Football can only be played in a stable nature,” said Keller. “Thanks to the cooperation with the United Nations and further measures, we will be able to significantly enhance our efforts for environmental and climate protection.
“Recently, we have commissioned measurement of the carbon footprint of the DFB. On this basis, we will develop a strategy and very concrete targets. From my perspective, it is crucial that we take DFB employees along in this journey.”
As part of its successful bid to host the 2024 UEFA European Championships, the German Football Association included a sustainability concept in its bid book – the first time this has ever happened.
Within the concept, the association pledged to “develop ambitious climate protection targets” to keep the tournament’s climate impact to a “minimum”.
One part of this plan is to create a ‘German Sports Climate Fund’ to help grassroots clubs invest in “climate-friendly technologies” for their facilities.
Lindita Xhaferi-Salihu, who leads the work on the Sports for Climate Action Framework, said she was “delighted” to welcome the German Football Association as a signatory.
“We look forward to working together to develop concrete steps and measures that will help the beautiful game of football score a winning goal for climate action,” she added.
In adopting the framework, the German Football Association has committed to its five principles: undertake systematic efforts to promote environmental responsibility, reduce overall climate impact, educate for climate action, promote sustainable and responsible consumption, and advocate for climate action through communication.