It’s been twelve years since India last hosted the ICC World Cup. Historically, the tournament has bolstered the economy of its hosting country, as those events usually do.
However, in the months leading to the event, critics have expressed doubts about India’s commitment to environmental sustainability, while hosting the event. Official data will only be available after the event is over. Still, let’s analyze the projections for the 2023 ICC World Cup.
What is the projected carbon footprint of the ICC World Cup 2023?
Calculating the impact of an event this long and complex is not simple. The calculations change based on the country’s existing infrastructure as well as what needs to be built to host the event. There’s also the issue of different, conflicting sources, that generate questions on the results we have until now.
Based on one of these projections, a single match from 2022 would produce, on average, 10.000 metric tons of CO2. That average will probably be lower than any match this year. In 2022, matches were only held in a handful of locations due to COVID-19.
The 2023 World Cup is taking place in 10 cities and stadiums. More hosting cities mean increased transportation emissions’ for fans, workers, and teams. It also means massive work on infrastructure and a greater logistic cost.
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How is the ICC tackling its sustainability issues?
The ICC’s main strategy for dealing with its emissions seems to be taking on a carbon footprint audit. As one ICC spokesperson puts it:
The ICC is still developing a global sustainability strategy for the sport, and as a part of that, it undertook a carbon footprint audit of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 and will do the same for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023
In theory, the Indian government stands out as a trailblazer by incorporating Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) into its legislative framework. This move compels corporations, to allocate a portion of their budget towards the sustainability of their operations. However, it is disheartening to note that the umbrella of CSR does not extend to sports corporations, like ICC, leaving events like this one with minimal regulatory oversight.
The good news is, that despite the lack of specific CSR mandates for sports entities, the tournament organizers have taken proactive steps towards environmental consciousness. Initiatives such as the installation of plastic recycling machines and a preference for partnerships with eco-friendly collaborators showcase their commitment to sustainability. While these projects undeniably contribute to positive change, there remains a considerable gap that demands attention and concerted efforts.
Addressing sustainability in the sports industry requires a 360-degree approach. Beyond recycling initiatives and eco-friendly partnerships, comprehensive regulations and guidelines specific to sports corporations need to be established. This would not only ensure that such entities are held accountable for their environmental impact but also encourage the adoption of sustainable practices throughout the sporting landscape.
In essence, while the tournament has made strides in promoting environmental responsibility, it serves as a reminder that a more comprehensive framework, inclusive of sports corporations, is essential to truly advance sustainability in the realm of sports.
Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed here by the authors are their own, not those of Impakter.com — In the Featured Photo: The Wankhede Stadium of Mumbai. Featured Photo Credit: AaDil.