The World Cup kicked off in Brazil this month, amidst protests across the country against the high cost of the stadiums, corruption, police brutality and forced evictions. Friends of the Earth Flanders and Brussels (Climaxi) is marking the World Cup with a public vote for the worst corporate sponsors of the tournament. The World Cup Greenwash award aims to expose greenwashing in the run-up to, and during, the tournament.
The candidates for the World Cup Greenwash award are:
The award aims to highlight the hypocrisy and negative environmental and social impacts of the big brands sponsoring the World Cup, and expresses solidarity with the environmental, social and trade union movements, including Friends of the Earth Brazil, who oppose Brazil's decision to host the World Cup alongside indigenous peoples, landless farmers and workers.
Infrastructural developments in preparation for the tournament have been linked to allegations of human rights abuses, including forced displacements and evictions, forced labour, child labour, discrimination, a lack of consultation with affected communities, and violent repression of often peaceful protesters.
Other corporate sponsors of the tournament include oil, car and tyre manufacturers, large pharmaceutical companies, and airline companies. Big brands are attempting to use their sponsorship of the World Cup to distract attention from their anti-social and environmentally damaging practices.