French President François Hollande and Paris 2024 Co-Chairman and triple Olympic gold medallist, Tony Estanguet recently made a call to leaders in business and the civil society in Paris, to highlight the role of sport in achieving sustainable development as part of France’s bid to host the 2024 Olympics.
The duo spoke at a seminar which held at the French National Institute of Sport and Physical Education (INSEP). Estanguet led the sustainable development element of the seminar which cut across 11 themes – culture, accessibility, economy and tourism, employment, digital innovation and health; with a team of seven sustainability focused entrepreneurs.
Initiatives, including Optimouv – a new software tool that will allow the optimisation of travel during sports events – were discussed at the seminar.
The Paris 2024 bid committee is working to establish an Environmental Excellency Committee with offers expected to abide by the new International Olympic Committee (IOC) Agenda 2020 directives on sustainability and the environment.
Mr Estanguet said: “I’m honoured and delighted to be alongside President Hollande here at INSEP to discuss how sport can implement environmental initiatives to help contribute to a greener society. It`s vital that we do what we can to look after our planet as one of the world`s biggest and most popular industries – sport – has an important part to play. This seminar led by UEFA EURO 2016 reaffirms France`s commitment to sustainable development in relation to major sport events.”
Estanguet went on to say, “Paris 2024 is fully committed to sustainable development and 95 per cent of our proposed competition venues already exist or will be temporary structures.
Following the 2024 Games, the Athletes Village and Media Village will be converted into a new Eco City with 5,000 homes for local people. Once finalised, this innovative and environmentally sensitive area will form a diverse, pleasant and multi-functional urban centre in Paris.”
Sustainability is the bane of existence at all levels and cannot be disintegrated from our affairs. It impacts on every area of life, even the mundane things. This may be the first time the Olympics and sports in general, would be harping on sustainability; sustainability has become associated with strategy, longer-term results and resource conservation.
This is a wake-up call to every industry, government, organization and individual to integrate sustainability in every aspect of lives.