Paris 2024 Earn First-Ever Olympic Bid Sustainability Certificate

Paris 2024 was awarded Monday ISO 20121 certification marking the first time an Olympic and Paralympic Games candidate has earned the prestigious sustainability rating.  The certification is an internationally recognized standard handed out to event organizers that are able to guarantee sustainable management of major global events.

Paris 2024 and World Wildlife Federation Celebrate Earth Hour 2017 in Paris (France-WWF Photo)

Paris 2024 and World Wildlife Federation Celebrate Earth Hour 2017 in Paris (France-WWF Photo)

The ISO 20121 certification is a requirement of Olympic organizing committees and was earned for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games last year, but this marks the first time it was awarded in the bidding stage.  The independent, Swiss-based audit body, SGS, which awarded the certification, found that Paris 2024 has excelled in four key areas of sustainable, responsible event planning.

According to Paris 2024 these include:

Social Consultation – Paris 2024 has consulted with a number of social development bodies on every aspect of its bid, ensuring sustainable and responsible planning.

Commitment to stakeholders – including schools, public sector, sports entities, private companies.  Seventeen of Paris 2024’s corporate partners all offer innovative services to ensure a progressive sustainable bid.

Governance – Paris 2024’s bid is built upon an ingrained code of ethics which practices financial transparency, environmental responsibility and sustainable innovation.

Legacy – that  the Paris 2024 Games will leave a lasting legacy for the people of France, with more sport, sustainable projects and social enterprises than ever before.

Paris has established itself as a global leader in environmental initiatives and at the forefront of the fight against climate change over the past year beating 125 cities in 2016 to be crowned World Wildlife Fund (WWF) Global Earth Hour City.  Saturday Paris 2024 played a key role in this year’s Earth Hour, with co-chair Tony Estanguet switching off the lights of the Eiffel Tower to make the city’s commitment to the global event and the bid’s pledge to deliver the first Games fully aligned with the Paris Climate Agreement.

In 2016 Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo was elected President of the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, and three months ago Paris won a prestigious C40 Cities Award, recognizing it as one of the world’s more innovative cities tackling climate change.

Paris 2024 promises that 100 per cent of spectators will travel by public transport during the Games contributing to a 55 per cent smaller carbon footprint than London 2012, which reportedly is the most sustainable Games to date.

Tony Estanguet, Paris 2024 co-chairman said “sustainable development has been at the heart of our project since the very beginning, and will continue to be so.  It is not an objective but a part of our bid’s DNA.

“We have devised a comprehensive project that promises a low carbon impact, responsible management, financial transparency, and a unique Games legacy.

“We have the ambition to offer Games that will have a positive, lasting impact on French society and on the Olympic movement.  The ISO 20121 certification guarantees that we will organize sustainable Games, in accordance with the Agenda 2020.”

SGS Development Director, Zakri Toufik said “SGS carried out a thorough audit of Paris 2024’s candidature including risk identification and evaluation, dialogue with stakeholders, operational control and communication.”

“The audit highlighted a real consistency between the executive management’s vision and the systems and processes put in place to create a sound economic, environmental, social and societal project. Several strong points were identified, particularly the strength of the dialogue with stakeholders. Since the very beginning of the project, Paris 2024 has established strong values such as inclusion, integrity and transparency.”

Paris is competing with Los Angeles to host the 2024 Games.  The winning city will be elected by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) September 13 in Lima, Peru.

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