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Source: DOSB A new guide from the World Conservation Union (ICUN) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC) shows how sport can benefit urban nature. Even if sport and nature often claim the same green spaces in cities and compete for them, a well-planned Sports infrastructure make positive contributions to inner-city biodiversity. A new guide released today by the International Union for Conservation of Nature, in collaboration with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and the San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI), identifies key environmental factors that city governments and sports facility developers are looking for can take into account the needs of nature in their planning. The new guide, published as part of the IUCN-IOC partnership, entitled “Sport and urban biodiversity: a framework for achieving mutual benefits for nature and sport in cities” explains how investments in urban biodiversity offer sports organizations, owners and operators of sports facilities, local organizing committees, urban planners and investors the opportunity to build a long-term and socially positive legacy in cities. “Sport and urban nature both play one role nal role for the well-being of the urban population and contribute to a livable urban environment New sports infrastructures and events offer unique opportunities to create space for biodiversity and strengthen the health and resilience of our cities, ”said IUCN Director General Bruno Oberle. “This guide is an important tool for city planners, developers and sports facility operators to make the most of these opportunities.” “We hope that this guide, along with other guides in the series, will help the sports movement improve its relationship with nature understand and inspire them to take concrete action to address today’s immense environmental challenges, ”said IOC Director General Christophe De Kepper. “Sports activities have to be of use to nature if we want to continue enjoying them, while at the same time striving to realize our vision of ‘creating a better world through sport’.” Guide with seven ecological criteriaThe guide describes a planning framework which includes seven ecological criteria that determine the impact of sports infrastructure on biodiversity, including: the size of the habitat; networking within urban space; the quality of the landscape structure that surrounds a habitat; the diversity of habitats available; the native vegetation; special resources, such as water and nesting sites, as well as nature-friendly space management. ”Decision-makers from politics and business often have to find cost-effective solutions to complex environmental problems. By applying these seven criteria, local authorities and the sports movement can help build resilient cities for athletes and the outdoors, ”said Robin Grossinger, a senior scientist at the San Francisco Estuary Institute (SFEI), an ecological research organization. The report also shows how sports facilities and events that have already taken these measures have contributed to nature conservation in urban environments.This guide is the fourth in a series that has been produced by the IUCN as part of a collaboration with the IOC. The first guide examined the general links between sport and biodiversity; the second guide focused on minimizing the environmental impact of new sports venues and the third identified solutions to mitigate the impacts associated with sporting events. As part of its Olympic Agenda 2020 strategic roadmap, the IOC actively supports the Olympic movement and the entire sports movement addressing some of the most critical challenges on earth, such as climate change and biodiversity loss. The current IUCN-IOC cooperation agreement runs from 2017-2020. In addition to producing the guides on sport and biodiversity, the IUCN has the application process for the Advising on the Olympic Games in 2024 and 2028 and taking on other tasks in connection with the IOC’s sustainability strategy.

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