— Published 2 October 2023

World Rugby and World Sailing win awards

The IOC is getting a head start. With three months to go before the end of the year, the IOC has announced the winners of its first Climate Action Awards. Launched last November, they aim to highlight how sport can play a role in tackling the climate crisis. Over 70 entries were received from across the Olympic movement for three award categories: sustainable travel, innovation and athlete awareness. For the first of the list, supported by Airbnb, the award went to British fencer Marcus Mepstead in the athletes category, World Sailing in the international federations category, and the Spanish Olympic Committee in the NOC category. The award recognizes effective actions and awareness-raising campaigns to promote more sustainable travel in connection with the sporting calendar. The “Climate Action and Innovation” prize, supported by Deloitte, was awarded to Peruvian sailor Paloma Schmidt, World Rugby and the Colombian Olympic Committee. The award recognizes creative and innovative solutions that contribute to climate action. Finally, the IOC awarded a prize for “Climate action and athlete awareness” to American middle-distance runner Ben Blankenship. His project, Endless Mileage, involves planting trees for every American who drops below 4 minutes (men) and 4 min 30 (women) in the mile. The initiative also distributes used clothing and sports equipment to local schools.