Title: Global Forum for Sport and Environment 2008
Organized by: United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), NPO Global Sports Alliance (GSA)
Time: 4-6 October 2008
Place: Alicante, Spain
An international line up representing sports organizations and federations, international sporting events, the sporting goods industry and related NGO/NPOs, gathered in Alicante, Spain from 4-6 October 2008 for the 5th Global Forum for Sport and Environment (G-ForSE) 2008. Held every two years, this year's Forum focused on the connections between sport and climate change
Organized by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and NPO Global Sports Alliance (GSA), G-ForSE 2008 was sponsored by Volvo and held in Alicante in conjunction with the launch of the Volvo Ocean Race.
The first plenary discussion held on the morning of 4th October focused on opportunities and challenges in greening sports and saw representatives of Beijing 2008, Vancouver 2010, South Africa 2010 and Sochi 2014 outline measures they've incorporated to reduced the impact of their events on the environment. Delegates then spent the afternoon watching the Volvo Ocean Race get underway on a sun-soaked Mediterranean.
The Formal Opening Session of G-ForSE 2008 took place on the morning of 5th October at the Alicante Congress Palace, with opening speeches from Ms. Teresa Ribera, Secretary of State for Climate Change, Spain; Mr. Leif Johansson, President AB Volvo anc CEO Volvo Group; and Mr. Achim Steiner, UNEP's Executive Director.
Sport is played across a diverse range of environments and each presents its own challenges in tackling environmental issues. In the second plenary, the participants heard about the commitment of sport organizations involved in golf, football, Grand Prix and cycling to tackling climate change.
In the afternoon sessions, the presentations looked at the impact of climate change on sports, such skiing, and how sporting events, both large and small, can offset or reduce their emissions. The final session of the day then turned to question of 'raising public awareness on the environment and climate change through sport'.
The final plenary held at the Hotel del Alba on the morning of the 6th October looked at solutions for climate change through sport and discussions on the wording of an "Alicante Declaration on Sport and Climate Change" spilled over into the afternoon.
Since the first G-ForSE was held in Tokyo in 2001, the commitment of sport to reducing its impact and raising environmental awareness has made dramatic progress. Most major sporting events now address the environment as a core issue in their preparation and this influence has begun to filter down to smaller and local events. Increasingly we see sporting facilities introducing measuring to reduce their impact, both during construction and while hosting events. The sporting goods industry has also taken steps and is developing innovative ways to reduce energy and material consumption that not only saves resources, but reduces costs.
For more information on G-ForSE 2008, the participants, the draft declaration and to download individual presentations, see the UNEP website
For enquiries regarding G-ForSE 2008 contact email@example.com