Soccer-FIFA to 'mitigate environmental impact' of 2030 World Cup

Soccer Football - FIFA Virtual Council Meeting - Zurich, Switzerland - October 4, 2023 General view of the World Cup trophy FIFA/Handout via REUTERS

(Reuters) - FIFA will take measures to "mitigate the environmental impact" of the three-continent 2030 World Cup, world soccer's governing body said.

FIFA last week named Morocco, Spain and Portugal as hosts of the 2030 tournament, while Uruguay, Argentina and Paraguay will also host the opening matches to mark the tournament's centenary.

The decision to host the tournament across three continents attracted criticism from climate activists, who cited emissions related to the additional travel required.

On its website, FIFA highlighted the fact that just three games would be played in South America, adding: "Morocco, Portugal and Spain will be the hosts of the FIFA World Cup 2030.

"Therefore, for 101 games, the tournament will be played in a footprint of neighbouring countries in close geographic proximity and with extensive and well developed transport links and infrastructure.

"FIFA will take all required measures to mitigate the environmental impact of the FIFA World Cup. From a sustainability point of view, it's also worth mentioning that only one bid significantly reduces travel in relation to site inspection visits and other meetings."

FIFA also confirmed that Uruguay, Argentina and Paraguay would automatically qualify for the tournament, meaning six out of 48 teams have been confirmed.

"Morocco, Portugal and Spain, as tournament hosts, and Uruguay, Argentina and Paraguay, as hosts of the centenary celebration, will qualify automatically from the slot allocation quota of their respective confederations," FIFA said.

(Reporting by Aadi Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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