The organisers of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic and Paralympic Games are taking steps to decrease the carbon footprint of the event, starting with natural CO2 refrigeration systems at the ice venues.
The ice venue cooling system, which has no impact on the environment, will be used at the speed skating, figure skating and short track venues, as well as the ice hockey training centres. A low global warming potential refrigerant will also be installed at the ice hockey and curling venues.
This is the first time the technology is being used in China and at the Olympics and it will reportedly lower emissions equivalent to yearly footprint of 3,900 cars.
“This is a landmark decision which could potentially help address the issue of climate change, both in China and even globally,” said Juan Antonio Samaranch, chair of the IOC coordination commission for the Games. “We are pleased to see that the IOC’s close collaboration with Beijing 2022 has resulted in such an important outcome.”
The Beijing 2022 organising committee is the latest of nearly 40 sporting organisations who have joined the UN Sports for Climate Action framework.
The initiative, which has already signed up the organisers of the Tokyo 2020 and Paris 2024 Olympics, is led by the IOC and encourages the global sports community to contribute to the fight against climate change.