Episode #16 – Leagues, teams and federations may not be in a position to halt or slow down climate issues, but they can prepare themselves to mitigate negative impacts by using the right strategies, says Madeleine Orr
What do baseball and cross-country skiing have in common? Nothing really, apart from the fact that both sports are facing significant challenges – even existential threat – because of extreme weather brought on by climate change.
Research undertaken by Sport Ecology Group co-director Madeleine Orr paints an uncomfortable picture for both sports. But the fact is that baseball and skiing are not alone – practically every sport (and, by extension, every sports organisation) is being impacted, and will continue to be impacted negatively by the increasing number of heatwaves, storms and floods caused by climate change.
We’ve established that sport is vulnerable – that is not in question. So in this episode, Orr discusses one of her latest pieces of research in which she developed the Climate Vulnerability of Sports Organisations Framework (CVSO).
The CVSO Framework looks at two criteria: 1. To what extent a sport organisation is impacted by climate change, and 2. The sport organisation’s capacity to deal with those threats.
In essence, sports organisations should be able to use this framework to discover just how prepared they are to cope with upheaval or disaster related to climate change, and adjust accordingly.
In this episode, Orr explains:
– Why climate change is negatively impacting opportunities and business operations in the sports industry
– How sports organisations can assess the threats they face
– What they need to do to get prepared – with a focus on budget contingencies, staff engagement, and risk management strategies
She also frames vulnerability as a positive rather than a negative, saying it gives sports organisations the opportunity to become more efficient, resilient businesses.
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