Travelling to Bundesliga matches: the carbon footprint of football fans

Publikationen: Beitrag in FachzeitschriftZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungBegutachtung




The purposes of this study were to estimate the carbon footprint caused by football fans travelling to Bundesliga matches (first division) in Germany in the 2018/19 season, to analyse determinants of seasonal carbon footprint, and to identify fan clusters based on travel behaviour. A nationwide online survey of football fans was conducted (n = 539) asking respondents to report their match-related travel behaviour. The average seasonal carbon footprint of a Bundesliga fan amounted 311.1 kg of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions (CO2-e), with car travel accounting for 70% of the emissions. The aggregate carbon footprint of all fans for the whole Bundesliga season was 369,765.2 t CO2-e. Buying out of these carbon emissions would cost over €9.2 million in total. The regression results revealed that club membership and commitment to favourite club significantly increased fans’ carbon footprint. The choice of favourite Bundesliga club also predicted carbon footprint, with fans of FC Bayern Munich and RB Leipzig producing a significantly higher carbon footprint than fans of Borussia Dortmund. The segmentation of Bundesliga fans by their travel behaviour identified three distinct clusters: Devoted travellers (19%), home fans (30%) and casual visitors (51%). These clusters differed significantly in terms of emissions per kilometre travelled, car use versus public transport, club membership, fan commitment, environmental consciousness, education and age. The findings have practical implications for policy makers, Bundesliga officials and club authorities, and can serve as a basis for initiatives to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in professional team sports.
ZeitschriftJournal of Sport & Tourism
Seiten (von - bis)253-272
PublikationsstatusVeröffentlicht - 2021

Bibliographische Notiz

Ahead of print.

ID: 6009626


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