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What’s that Green Thing on Top of Georgia State Stadium?

By , The Signal

Photo by Jerell Rushin | The Signal

Photo by Jerell Rushin | The Signal

Sanford Stadium on the University of Georgia campus has its hedges. Georgia State Stadium on Georgia State’s campus has a garden sprouting on its rooftop.

The Panthers play in one of college football’s leading stadiums in environmental sustainability. The year-old stadium made Georgia State one of three finalists for the United States Gypsum Corporation (USG) NACDA Sustainability Award, given by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and USG.

The award is given to universities who incorporate “sustainable practices and materials into their athletics facilities.” Georgia State did not win the award but still received $10,000 in USG merchandise to put towards athletic and academic buildings.

One of Georgia State’s student organizations, the Student Environmental Team (SET), is building the garden and has optimistic goals for the future. SET member Gina Sheridan said the club will use the garden to provide educational opportunities for students and the Georgia State Athletics staff. It will engage the community by letting them grow in the garden, providing them the opportunity to improve their agricultural literacy.

“It could allow people who work in this building to have their own part of the garden if they’re interested in that,” Sheridan said. “It could possibly inspire them to take more sustainable approaches to their building as well and perhaps recycle more, compost food waste more. Anything like that to get them thinking more.”

The garden isn’t bustling like New York City’s streets on a Monday morning yet, but Sheridan said having a garden space has been a goal of SET’s for more than four years. SET finally broke through in 2018, and though it was a strenuous, it was well worth the wait. Sheridan expects to start growing this fall.

“It involved a lot of going from person to person and finding out where’s a good space for us, who’s in charge of this space,” Jessica Jones, acting SET president in 2017, said. “Then after that, we petitioned with the Office of Sustainability and whoever would listen as to why we should have this space and what we would do with it.”

Read the full article here.

How Cities are Using Sport to Accelerate Sustainable Development

Cities are increasingly using sports events – and sport generally – to strategically improve social, environmental and economic conditions. Dakar will have the opportunity to do the same ahead of the Youth Olympic Games in 2022.

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Twelve years after South Africa etched its name into history by hosting the first FIFA World Cup on African soil, Senegal will break new ground when Olympics rolls into town in 2022.

While it’s fair to say that hosting the Youth Olympic Games doesn’t have the same cultural significance as staging a World Cup – or Summer Games that has so far eluded the continent – it will be a good opportunity for the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to test the waters with an event that is increasingly gaining relevance.

Dakar, the nation’s capital, learnt of its bid’s success last month during the 2018 edition of the Youth Olympic Games in Buenos Aires. The two-week event also illustrated what the city can expect in four years time: one million spectators attended the Games, 4,000 athletes competed and 1,200 educational and cultural events were staged.

There’s a lot for the people of Dakar to get excited about. But organising the Games comes with major challenges. Infrastructure must be developed. Legacy aspirations must follow a coherent narrative. Budgets must be managed. And the pressure is on to demonstrate Africa’s suitability for hosting major sporting events.

Modernising infrastructure

For Senegal, though, hosting the Youth Olympic Games represents a unique opportunity to accelerate its own development plans. Since November 2012, the ‘Plan Sénégal émergent’ – a wide-ranging piece of government policy – has been in place as the blueprint for achieving a number of medium- and long-term sustainable development goals by 2035.

Universal health cover, drinking water and sanitation improvements, and a public investment programme are three of the plan’s main pillars. More significantly for Dakar, however, is the City Modernisation Programme that will almost certainly be positively impacted by the preparations for the Games.

Read the full article here.

Climate Change Reducing the Number of Winter Olympic Candidate Cities, Says Thomas Bach

IOC president argues potential candidates see “no return on investment” as rising global temperature threatens winter sports.
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Finding cities capable of hosting the Winter Olympic Games is becoming increasingly challenging as a result of climate change, according to International Olympic Committee (IOC) president Thomas Bach.

Bach said that while geographical obstacles limited the number of potential host cities anyway, the issue was being exacerbated by the changing weather and how it’s being received by potential decision-makers within cities.

“What we have now with climate change, in particular in Europe, is an even further reduced number of potential candidates,” he told delegates at the Smart Cities and Sport Summit in Lausanne. “People are saying it makes no sense any more to invest in winter sports.

“There’s no return on investment because in 10 years we will have no snow.”

A piece of research published this year by the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada, painted a bleak picture for the future of the Winter Games, revealing more than half of the former host cities will be too warm by the end of the century to host the event.

If global warming continues at the current rate – past the 1.5°C needed to stabilise climate change – it’s likely that alpine ski resorts will lose up to 70% of their snow cover.

Europe will likely be the destination for the 2026 Games, with both Stockholm and an Italian bid involving Milan and Cortina D’Ampezzo through to the next stage of the bidding process. Calgary also made the cut, although it’s being widely reported that its bid may be close to being withdrawn.

Read the full article here.

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