The starting point for the development of the DFB carbon footprint tool was the desire of many amateur football clubs to become more involved in climate protection. The tool that has now been launched offers a low-threshold approach to track down the sources of their own emissions.
As a representative of one of the participating pilot clubs, Wolfgang Niggeweg, Deputy Chairman of the Hannoverscher Sport-Club von 1893 e.V., remarks: “What is surprising from my point of view is the very high proportion of our carbon footprint that comes from transport. We now know that, and we can start to improve our footprint. However, finding out our carbon footprint will sharpen our focus overall on all these different areas.”
Benno von der Dovenmühle, Corporate Partnerships Manager at myclimate, is part of the project team and knows all about this: “Transport is indeed a driver of emissions in sport. To ensure that the collection of data from members, employees, players and fans does not become too complicated, we have provided calculation aids and surveys specifically tailored to amateur football in the carbon footprint tool.”
Afterwards, the clubs can take individual measures to reduce the risk. Even if, for example, the emissions coming from fans' choice of transport are not directly in the hands of clubs, there are still a lot of options. From discounted local public transport tickets to free bicycle checks during matches, there is no limit to creativity when it comes to sustainable mobility.
In addition to transport, team trips and fans' transport choices, the DFB carbon footprint tool also asks questions in the categories of energy, water, food, materials and waste. In developing the DFB carbon footprint tool, myclimate was able to draw on the experience of previous work in sports such as ice hockey, golf and amateur sports.
Susanne Köhler led the project team at myclimate. As a senior consultant in the Consulting and Solutions department, she was mainly responsible for the calculation and plausibility check in addition to coordination. “A particular challenge is always finding a good balance between the degree of detail needed and user-friendliness for all clubs. This could only be achieved through very good and comprehensive cooperation. Not only with the DFB, but also with the amateur football clubs and internally between our experts in the Communications, Design, IT and Consulting and Solutions departments.”
Moris Knoche, who as the Chairman of the TuS 1863 Hackenheim e.V. also took part as a representative of a pilot club, emphasises: “It is only because of the survey on the subject of transport among department heads, coaches and sportspeople that we have succeeded in raising awareness of this subject again among members and also among the management. Of course, the aim will be to make improvements in all areas.”
The DFB offers comprehensive recommendations for action on its climate protection website, klimaschutz.dfb.de.
For myclimate, the publication of the DFB carbon footprint tool represents a further step in its mission to advance climate protection. The sports industry in particular offers effective levers here.
After all, now is the time to speed things up, insists Benno von der Dovenmühle, climate and sports expert at myclimate: “We need to reduce emissions quickly in order to meet the climate targets. To this end, sport can bring together people from all sectors and raise awareness of climate protection. And in very large numbers. The DFB carbon footprint tool alone enables 24,000 amateur football clubs to measure emissions and take action. Together with the club members, the fans and also the sponsors. Sport is therefore an extremely good way to get people to act for climate protection. There are huge opportunities to save carbon in sport.”
After completing the questionnaire, the sports clubs are shown these saving opportunities as a graphical and numerical analysis. If the data is collected for each season, their successes in reducing emissions can be clearly tracked.