With just over one year to go until Qatar hosts the FIFA World Cup™, environmental sustainability remains at the heart of tournament preparation, with the aim of leaving behind a green legacy as one of its key objectives. As part of this commitment, the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (SC) has recently partnered with Seven Clean Seas to deliver a plastic-neutral tournament.
Seven Clean Seas will work with Qatar 2022 organizers to raise awareness about plastic pollution, develop plastic waste reduction plans and offset plastics used in the tournament by physically removing plastic waste from rivers and oceans. The amount recovered will be equivalent to the plastic waste generated from the hosting of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ and will ensure the tournament is plastic neutral.
“Waste reduction has been a major focus of ours from the beginning, from the moment we broke ground to build our stadiums. Since then, our FIFA World Cup Sustainability Strategy has launched several initiatives to raise awareness about waste and recycling, minimise waste and achieve world-class recycling rates,” said Eng. Bodour Al Meer, the SC’s Sustainability Director.
She continued: “Our new partnership with Seven Clean Seas will help us raise awareness about plastic pollution, enhance our plans and strategies to reduce plastic waste, and ultimately recover plastic waste from rivers and oceans. It is the first time this concept has been implemented on such a scale.”
The FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ Sustainability Strategy includes a comprehensive set of initiatives to mitigate tournament-related emissions, including energy-efficient stadiums, low-emission transportation and sustainable waste management practices at stadium construction sites. In addition to plastic neutrality, Qatar 2022 will be the first FIFA World Cup™ to achieve carbon-neutrality as well.
“The most recent estimates suggest that 11 million tons of plastic enter the oceans globally every year. That’s the equivalent to 50kg of plastic pollution per meter of coastline. This plastic poses a serious threat to vital marine ecosystems, marine and birdlife, coastal communities and human health, so we must act quickly!” said Tom Peacock-Nazil, Founder and CEO of Seven Clean Seas.
“In response, we developed a strategy to help people, companies, and events identify their plastic consumption, reduce unnecessary use and offset what is necessary by investing in projects that directly tackle the issue in some of the world's most affected locations. To date, we have recovered over 200,000kg of ocean plastic and by partnering with large events like Qatar 2022 we will be able to substantially increase our environmental and social impact,” added Peacock-Nazil.
In addition to environmental considerations, the FIFA World Cup 2022 Sustainability Strategy also focuses on instilling sustainable practices across human, economic, social and governance practices related to the tournament.