• David Thibodeau

SDG #7 Affordable and Clean Energy

Goal 7 is Affordable and Clean Energy. This goal is all about ensuring access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all. Sport can help achieve this SDG in a variety of ways.


Sport can be used as a platform for discussion on energy efficiency and clean energy. The Tokyo Olympics has a goal of using 100% renewable energy. If an event as big as the Olympic Games can be pulled off with renewable energy, this will serve as an example for communities around the world that it can (and should) be done.


The more sporting facilities and events turn to renewable and clean energy the more it will be seen as a viable energy option. Sport infrastructure can promote energy models that adopt sustainable energy.


Office buildings of sport governing bodies like the IOC Headquarters should all also convert to renewable energy. Opened in 2019, The Olympic House is powered by solar panels and has many other sustainable aspects. Offices can purchase offset credits for the electricity use or switch to a green energy provider.


Thinking very blue sky here, but through innovation will it be eventually possible to create some sort of clothing that creates energy when you run that can charge your phone? Can we innovate stationary bikes or treadmills in our homes to produce a little bit of power? Imagine if we could find a way to harness the kinetic energy that we produce by participating in sport and turning it into power. Sport could literally be powering the future. Right now a lot of studies have been done that show bikes cannot produce enough energy to power items, however we do have self-powered stationary exercise bikes. Imagine if we could somehow harness that power and multiply it.


There was an example in Atomic Habits by James Clear, where an electrical engineer connected his stationary bike and connected it to his laptop and television. He wrote a computer program that would only allow Netflix to run if he was biking. If he started slowing down, Netflix would pause. While in this case I don’t think he was powering his laptop and TV with his bike, wouldn’t it be cool if he was?


Sport can have a social impact by putting in place a standard that the rest of society can move towards. By adopting a sustainable energy source, we are showing that it is possible.

©2020 by Sports for Social Impact.