The IBU joins UN climate action initiative for sports
The International Biathlon Union (IBU) is proud to announce that it has joined the United Nations (UN) Sports for Climate Action Framework as the first sustainability initiative under the federation’s new strategic plan, Target 26.
IBU President Olle Dahlin said:
“There are few sports that are as dependent on climate as snow sports are. Being the international governing body for biathlon, it is appropriate for the IBU to assume responsibility to fight climate change and help pave the way for a carbon neutral future. The IBU will partner with its 59 member federations and several dozen organising committees to implement initiatives that will minimise the environmental impact of biathlon and its events, and engage the global biathlon fanbase in addressing climate change.”
In signing the Framework, the IBU commits to the following five principles:
- Undertaking systematic efforts to promote greater environmental responsibility;
- Reducing overall climate impact;
- Educating for climate action;
- Promoting sustainable and responsible consumption; and
- Advocating for climate action through communication.
Clare Egan, Chair of the IBU Athletes’ Committee, commented:
“As biathletes, we need regular access to snow and have already experienced first-hand the impact of climate change on our training. Promoting sustainability and climate action is of great concern to us and one of the main topics on the agenda in the IBU Athletes’ Committee. Notably, a recent survey of biathlon fans also told us that 78 per cent of them believe climate change to be the biggest issue facing our sport.”
As mandated by the adoption of Target 26 in October 2019, the IBU is in the process of developing a sustainability strategy, intending to establish biathlon as a leader in promoting sustainability in sport. The draft IBU sustainability strategy will be presented for discussion at the 14th Ordinary IBU Congress later this year, supported by a series of consultations with various stakeholder groups.
The UN’s Sports for Climate Action Framework already includes more than 120 international sports organisations, such as the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) and several International Sport Federations. Co-created and launched by UN Climate Change and the IOC in December 2018, the Framework provides a powerful platform for the sports community to develop a joint approach to climate action.