Qatar 2022™ – Sense and Sustainability

FIFA World Cup™ tournaments last long in the collective cultural memory. How many young kids can remember their first experience, or screaming at the TV, willing their team on from afar? The tears or elation as the final whistle rings out across the stadium

Football captures the global imagination in a way no other sport does and yet a successful FIFA World Cup™ is made up of so many parts that go unseen or get quickly forgotten amongst the on-pitch drama. It will be 12 years between Qatar being named the FIFA World Cup 2022™ hosts. 12 years in which huge amounts of time, energy and thought have gone into creating what will be an incredible tournament. So many of those that put in the hard yards will never be known by the general public and yet their contributions will have all been essential.

One of the areas of focus underpinning Qatar 2022™ which has been taken very seriously has been the sustainability aspect of the tournament. From the reusable and modular nature of some of the stadiums to the greening of Qatar with a substantial tree planting project, the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy (the body responsible for
the FIFA World Cup™ projects and initiatives scheduled in Qatar in 2022 are ensuring this event will be super sustainable.

In a report and accompanying video published last week, 5 key sustainability achievements were highlighted.

1. Over 16,000 thousand trees and thousands of more shrubs will be planted across 850,000 m2 in the run-up to the tournament and every effort has been made to ensure that this greening of the desert will be a permanent feature after the FIFA World Cup™ is over. The species are all super hardy and resilient to Qatar’s climate conditions and will provide crucial habitat to wildlife for decades to come.

2. The Ras Abu Aboud Stadium has one of the most unique and sustainable designs’ ever to be seen in stadium construction and as a consequence is possibly the most sustainable ever created. The stadium is constructed out of 974 shipping containers in a genius modular system that enables it to be completely dismantled after the tournament and all the containers put back into use on ships crossing the Arabian Gulf waters it stands beside.

3. Qatar 2022™ has procured the most sustainable stadium lighting currently available globally. Historically stadium floodlighting uses very energy-intensive technology but the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy has sourced cutting edge LED systems that use a fraction of the electricity of older designs thus reducing the overall carbon footprint of the event.

4. Waste not, want not is at the heart of this FIFA World Cup™ and legacy commitments are as important as tournament commitments. Some of the stadiums will be reduced in capacity after FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™ to be more in line with the needs of Qatari domestic sports requirements. As such materials will be recycled and as part of that the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy have arranged for 170,000 stadium seats to be donated to countries that lack sufficient sports infrastructure ensuring that the benefits of the tournament are shared across the globe.

5. Up to 90% of all the material dismantled from the old Al Rayyan Stadium was reused or repurposed upon the construction of the new Ahmed bin Ali Stadium that stands in its place which is the highest reuse of a completely rebuilt stadium ever.

As well as these standout sustainability examples the report highlights many other important considerations and ecological design solutions that make up the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022™. 15% of all the materials used for the entire project were recycled. The tournament will be 30% more energy-efficient than international benchmarks annd Qatar 2022™ will be a whopping 40% more water-efficient than international benchmarks.

This meticulous attention to detail and the time and effort employed to strive to make this FIFA World Cup™ the greenest to date are just one example of the work that goes on in the background of years to ensure that the magical memories played out on the pitches after kick-off are not the only lasting legacy that will make Qatar 2022™ spectacular.

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