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Climate on losing side of Euro 2008

The environment ministers of Switzerland, Austria, Germany and Liechtenstein have criticised Uefa for not adhering to climate standards during Euro 2008.

In the name of the four ministers, Switzerland’s Moritz Leuenberger called on European football’s governing body to buy certificates to offset carbon dioxide emissions generated by the football championships.

The ministers criticised Uefa for refusing to accept its responsibilities to the climate, a spokesman for Leuenberger said after the ministers’ meeting on Monday.

The Swiss environment ministry estimated that it would cost Uefa around SFr1.5 million ($1.44 million) to purchase emission certificates.

Leuenberger said he “expected” Uefa to make the payment since the organisation would generate around SFr1 billion in profits from the championship taking place in Switzerland and Austria, and since – listed as a non-profit organisation – it pays little tax.

Leuenberger and his Austrian counterpart, Josef Pröll, said the host countries had lived up to their end of the bargain.

They said the “Charter for Sustainability Uefa Euro 2008” signed a year ago by the two governments had proved successful.

Part of the charter called for the promotion of public transport. Tickets to matches entitle fans to travel for free on trains, trams and buses.

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SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR