Olympians and Paralympians call on world leaders to work together to tackle climate change

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Posted 7 hours ago

Proposed by International Olympic Committee

In a powerful video Produced with the support of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), athletes who competed in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games call on world leaders to act for the climate. The call comes as global governments and representatives of business and civil society gather at the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), which begins this week in Glasgow, Britain.

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Initiated by Hannah Mills, MBE, two-time Olympic sailing champion and most decorated British sailor of all time, and British Olympic rower Melissa Wilson, the video features more than 50 Olympians and Paralympians from around the world.

These include three-time Olympic medalist Pau Gasol (basketball, Spain), who is also a member of the IOC Athletes’ Commission; the double Olympic champion and world record holder in the marathon Eliud Kipchoge (athletics, Kenya); Tokyo 2020 Olympic champion Tom Daley (diving, Great Britain); double Olympic champion Andy Murray (tennis, Great Britain); Tokyo 2020 Olympic champion Emma Twigg (rowing, New Zealand); Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Champion Hannah Cockroft MBE (wheelchair racing, Great Britain); Tokyo 2020 Paralympic athlete Koyo Iwabuchi (table tennis, Japan); Tokyo 2020 Olympic champion Martine Grael (sailing, Brazil); and many more.

Athletes recall the challenges and obstacles they overcame as they pursued excellence at Tokyo 2020, and call on world leaders to do the same when they meet at “Olympic Climate Summits” to decide on the global response to the climate crisis.

“The Olympic dream is to be the best you can be – and that doesn’t just mean competing or winning medals; it means being a good citizen of the world. I think we have a responsibility to use our platforms to highlight the need for all of us to live and operate more responsibly, ”said Mills.

In 2019 – also supported by the IOC – Mills launched the Large plastic pledge, an athlete-led movement to eliminate the use of single-use plastic in and beyond sport. She believes that if the entire sports community changes its habits and makes its voice heard, the ripple effect can create a global tidal wave of change.

“Our environmental movement is fortunate to have the support of the IOC,” says Mills. “It’s a clear demonstration of their commitment to building a better world through sport. However, sport is only part of a much larger global picture. We are counting on world leaders to accelerate climate action at COP26. “

“The IOC is delighted to support this initiative and help Olympic athletes use their powerful voices to create a more sustainable future for all,” said President of the IOC Thomas Bach. “Climate change is one of the greatest challenges humanity has ever faced, and the IOC is proud to lead the Olympic Movement’s response to this crisis. Our recent commitment to reduce our carbon emissions by 50% by 2030 and our support for this initiative are part of that effort. Sport has the power to make the world a better place, and today we have the opportunity to use that power in the face of climate change. ”

Durability is an essential pillar of Olympic Agenda 2020 + 5, the strategic roadmap of the Olympic Movement. The IOC strives to ensure that the principles of sustainability are incorporated into its activities as an organization, as the owner of the Olympic Games and as a leader of the Olympic Movement. As part of this effort, the IOC works with athletes to harness their inspirational power to promote sustainability through sport.

In response to the growing climate crisis, the IOC, which is already carbon neutral, has pledged to be climate positive from 2024. This means it will remove more carbon from the atmosphere than it takes. emits.

This will be achieved by reduce the IOC’s direct and indirect greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2024 and by 50% by 2030; offset the remaining emissions by Olympic Forest Project; and using its influence to encourage the entire Olympic Movement to take action on climate change.

From 2030, the IOC will demand that all the Olympic Games are positive for the climate. Inspired by this requirement, Paris 2024 is already working on the organization of positive Olympic Games for the climate in 2024.

In 2018, in collaboration with UN Climate Change, the IOC contributed to the development of the United Nations Climate Action Framework, which aims to stimulate climate action in the world of sport. More than 270 sports organizations have joined to date, including the IOC itself. The IOC has played a leadership role in the implementation of the Framework.

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The International Olympic Committee is an international non-profit, civil, non-governmental organization made up of volunteers committed to building a better world through sport. It redistributes over 90 percent of its revenue to the wider sports movement, which means that every day the equivalent of US $ 3.4 million is spent helping athletes and sports organizations at all levels in the world. world.

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International Olympic Committee

International Olympic Committee

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) is an independent, non-profit international organization committed to building a better world through sport. It redistributes over 90 percent of its revenue to the wider sports movement, which means that every day the equivalent of US $ 3.4 million is spent helping athletes and sports organizations at all levels in the world. world.

As the leader of the Olympic Movement, the IOC acts as a catalyst for collaboration between all parts of the Olympic family, National Olympic Committees (CNO), International sports federations (FI), athletes and Organizing Committees for the Olympic Games (OCOG) to World Olympic Partners, Broadcast Partners and United Nations (UN) Agencies, and fosters success through a wide range of programs and projects. On this basis, it ensures the regular celebration of the Olympic Games, supports all affiliated member organizations of the Olympic Movement and strongly encourages, by appropriate means, the promotion of the Olympic values.

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