Mitigating biodiversity impacts of sports events

Authors: Brownlie, Susie, Bull, Joseph W., Stubbs, David,

There is growing recognition of the need for sport and sports events to be conducted in socially and environmentally responsible ways and this is reflected in the attitudes of governments, public authorities and regulators. This means that taking a proactive and diligent approach to environmental management is a vital part of the sport sector’s licence to operate as well as growing and sustaining fan bases. Biodiversity conservation should be a key element in any environmentally responsible approach to sports event management. These guidelines focus on the often complex links between biodiversity and sport, and highlight that sports events can also benefit biodiversity. Each event offers an opportunity to raise public awareness of the value of nature and influence attitudes towards biodiversity and its conservation. These guidelines provide an overview of the issues and risks. They also offer help on how to make informed choices in avoiding harmful impacts and achieving positive outcomes. All parties involved in the planning and delivery of sports events are responsible for understanding and managing the potential biodiversity impacts and opportunities to ensure no lasting harm, and preferably a lasting positive legacy.