“Ecology is the common goal in the world of sport”
As a partner committed to French sport and the insurer of over 30,000 clubs and thirty Olympic federations and leagues, the MAIF brought all its engagements with sport together in a common scheme entitled “Sport Planète” in 2019. The aim: to construct a sport which respects the environment, as the MAIF’s President, Yves Pellicier, explains.
With the climate emergency becoming ever more urgent, the MAIF has made respect for the environment and a sustainable future two main lines in its strategic position. This commitment can take various forms. What are you doing in the different areas where the MAIF intervenes?
The latest IPCC report reminds us how urgent it is to take action and of the need to act together to protect the planet. That is why since 2007 the MAIF has been committed to making a positive impact on the environment using multiple approaches around three strands: “motivate – educate – get moving”
Information is no longer enough; action is at the heart of the model we are offering. Our commitment to future generations includes a wide range of everyday activities for people. They encompass mobility issues such as help to buy low-emission or electric vehicles, contracts for soft mobility or support with energy expenses, sports practice and waste management.
At the beginning of January you announced a new “ecological dividend” and pledged to devote 10% of your profits every year to projects for the climate and regenerating biodiversity. What schemes will you be supporting?
The ecological dividend is a concrete commitment to helping the planet. We have already set up schemes within the company to control our carbon impact. At the heart of our efforts is the reduction of greenhouse gases, by using renewable energy, as we do in our head office, or using only recycled paper. The effects of global warming are visible to everyone and oblige us to take action. In this context it makes sense to help with creating projects, with preventing risk areas, with preserving biodiversity for sustainable forest management, and the restoration of wetlands and watercourses.
To take an example in sport, we have created a team of eight eco-adventurers, supported by the “Sport Planète” movement brought together by the MAIF. These are committed sports men and women committed to protecting the planet who will undertake different eco-adventures combining sporting exploits, awareness-raising and concrete action: teaching about sustainable eating habits, collecting rubbish, distributing swarms of bees, planting trees…. All these projects have a significant impact on the environment.
“Giving priority to our social and regional activities”
Since 2019 the MAIF has been organising the “Sport Planète” scheme. What is this invitation to take action, backed up by the Sport Planète manifesto revealed at the beginning of February 2023?
Three years ago, we decided to make ecology the main area of the MAIF’s involvement in sport and to call it “Sport Planète”. The aim is to unite the world of sport around the climate problem. In our opinion it is important to combine forces and ambitions which can act in favour of the environment. For us, particularly in the realm of sport, it is the major battle. “Sport Planète” is above all a movement, federated by the MAIF, uniting various stakeholders: sport federations, athletes, event organisers, NGOs, educational establishments and other structures. Together, we have produced numerous resources: guides, evaluation and communication tools, prizes, labels, and we organise events for meeting up and sharing experiences. The first Sport Planète General Assembly held in October 2022 was an example of this. The aim is to contribute to raising awareness and motivating stakeholders and supporting those who want to work for more environmentally responsible sport. The Sport Planète Manifesto produced following the General Assembly shows this determination to take tangible action for the planet.
The MAIF and our Think Tank have joined forces to strengthen sport’s impact in society. What is the reason for this?
The collaboration with Sport and Citizenship fits into our desire to integrate and support sport stakeholders in order to take action for the planet. We think there is an urgent need to develop the transition to greener sport, around issues such as the legacy from facilities and infrastructure, transport optimisation and water consumption: themes which should drive and federate a movement for sustainable sport.
The“Sport Planète” Manifesto
The Sport Planète movement, federated by the MAIF, has been taking action to reconcile sporting practices and commitment to the environment for three years. In 2023 all those involved received a common roadmap to guide their efforts: the Sport Planète Manifesto, along with a platform to disseminate it and make it tangible.
Be like Sport and Citizenship and join the movement!