Euro 2024: Uefa encourages teams to avoid flying between matches to reduce carbon impact

July 18, 2023

Teams at Euro 2024 will be expected to travel to group-stage matches by coach or train instead of flying, to reduce their carbon impact.

European football governing body Uefa says it wants next summer’s tournament in Germany to be “the most sustainable European Championship of all time”.

Group games have been regionalised to favour travel by land.

Fans will also be offered discounted long-distance train tickets and free access to local public transport.

Flights produce greenhouse gases – mainly carbon dioxide (CO2) – from burning fuel. These gases contribute to climate change.

Uefa hopes to discourage short-haul flights during the group stage by dividing fixtures into three clusters in the north, west and south of the country, meaning travel by rail or road is more practical.

That may change should teams progress through to a knockout game at the other end of the country.

The distance between the most northerly host city, Hamburg, and the most southerly, Munich, is 380 miles.

The plans form part of Uefa’s environmental, social and governance strategy, featuring measures to tackle discrimination and promote health and wellbeing.

This is our chance to lead by example by delivering the tournament to the highest sustainability standards,” said Uefa director for social and environmental sustainability Michele Uva.

Uefa has received criticism over its commitment to sustainability while expanding European football’s footprint at the same time.

It has introduced a new competition, the Europa Conference League, and plans to expand the Champions League from 2024 – both of which will increase the number of flights taken by clubs around Europe.

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