Climate and Sports


There is no more popular endeavor in the world today than sports. Billions of people watch the World Cup and Olympics. Hundreds of millions of people watch other sports. Sport reaches billions of human minds and hearts in a deep, emotional way, because it arouses passions, interest and imagination. All these qualities make sports the perfect vehicle to promote climate change action and awareness.

The power of sport could help with the fight against climate change. At sporting events, and during the televising of events, fans could be encouraged to be more responsible in their behavior towards the environment. This could be done at stadium and arena venues all around the world and on sports networks.  One immediate effect of this would be reducing the environmental footprint of individual events by encouraging more responsible behavior by those attending such events.

A break could be designated during the event which would use the scoreboard and public address system to promote environmental awareness in the arena or stadium, and also, outside the event, at work or home.

To accomplish this, various governing bodies at the international, and national level, as well as owners and executives of sports leagues and associations would have to be engaged in order to organize and strategize a coordinated and cohesive plan of action to educate the public at sporting events.

Sponsors of sporting events would also be engaged in the process of making the public more aware and educating them to the impact of their actions and behavior on the environment, by using public service announcements produced by sponsors as well as using advertising that mentions the environment.

The environmental impact of building sports facilities is now a given.   But more needs to be done, because large arenas and stadiums have a very large environmental footprint.  Venue owners could take additional steps, as part of this campaign, to reduce their environmental impact further.

The greatest impact, of course, would be in engaging sports celebrities to join the fight against climate change. Athletes are perhaps the most admired, and respected of all celebrities. Sports stars play an important role in many peoples lives, particularly in the lives of younger people, who look up to them as role models.

Sports celebrities would have to be at the forefront of these efforts to educate people on climate change.  They would have to send a unified message.  Such unification of purpose, by athletes who are often rivals, and from different teams, would send a message to humanity that it needs to unite to defeat climate change so all of humanity wins the dangerous game we are playing with the environment.