To balance out the environmental impact of the recent World Cup, managing body FIFA offset its operational carbon emissions by purchasing carbon credits.
In its CO2 calculations, FIFA has included all the carbon dioxide output from the preparation and staging phase of the event. It has also reported all the scope 3 emissions (classified as all indirect emissions from FIFA's value chain) and encompassed emissions from all spectator air travel to the 64 matches in 12 locations, all of which brought the World Cup's total output to 2.72 million tonnes of carbon dioxide. To offset the impact of all this greenhouse gas, FIFA bought different types of carbon credit and also provided funds to four low-carbon projects in Brazil.
What has not been accounted for are estimates from the Brazilian government that suggest just the infrastructure for the World Cup alone generated 1.4 million tonnes of CO2, which could have been minimised if existing structures had been renovated and used rather than constructing totally new structures.
The Brazilian government raised donations for carbon credits from its industry sponsors, in return for publicity in the event's official documents and releases, while FIFA just bought the credits themselves to compensate the Greenhouse Gas emission (GHG).
Public opinion suggests that this all seems like a token gesture rather than a significant effort and much more could have been done to reduce the event's impact if green technologies could have been pushed in the areas of lighting, waste management and energy and credits used from these endeavours to offset the tournament's emissions.