The climate emergency is no longer disputed. As natural disasters follow one another at a global level, there is no longer any question of waiting to act. As a key European outdoor organisation, ENOS is mobilising and strongly committing itself to the greening of the outdoor sports sector. As such, the network has committed to promote and act on the sustainability agenda, through the publication of a new Policy Position Paper on the European Green Deal.

The European Green Deal, a global policy commitment at EU level

Reiterating the European Commission’s commitment to address climate and environmental challenges in the context of the implementation of the United Nations 2030 Agenda, the European Green Deal aims to protect, conserve and enhance natural and human capital within the Union.

By placing sustainable development objectives at the heart of EU policy-making and action, the Green Deal aims to make the EU carbon neutral by 2050. Achieving this ambition requires all sectors to engage in a sustainable transition. The outdoor sector is no exception to the rule but can alsohave a special role to play and this is certainly the view of ENOS.

The contribution of outdoor sports to the European Green Deal: ENOS is strongly committed

Directly immersed in natural environments and therefore privileged witnesses of their degradation, outdoor sports enthusiasts and organisations must actively contribute to the achievement of this Green Deal. After having been appointed as an observer to the European Commission’s group of experts on green sport, the network then committed itself by developing this Position Paper, in connection with this Green Deal. This critical and important document for the sector  has just been published.

In addition to highlighting the European Commission’s proposals, ENOS members are reinforcing their commitments, advocating for even more far-reaching measures. Indeed, the partners involved in the drafting of the paper (Barbara Eigenschenk from TUM, Benjamin Billet from CESN, Eduard Ingles from INEFC, João Zamith from Surf Clube de Viana, Mike McClure from Sport NI, Tilman Sobek from Mountain Bike Forum and Yann Leymarie from SFE) considered that sustainability in itself could not meet the objectives of the European Green Deal if it was not accompanied by a principle of restoration. By this term, they mean that the redevelopment of habitats and ecosystems, and the rich biodiversity associated with them, must become a priority. They then formulate recommendations, actions and commitments to be urgently implemented to meet this need.

Ten central and evocative themes, emerging from their reflections, are then detailed throughout this Position Paper and designed to meet the objectives:

  • “Reconnecting people with nature to help increase, enhance and protect biodiversity”,
  • “Being green, eating green and supporting sustainable agriculture”,
  • “Clean energy for clean and green sports”,
  • “Sustainable industries, resources and equipment for outdoor sports”,
  • “Greening our outdoor infrastructure”,
  • “Be mobile, #BEACTIVE”,
  • “Zero pollution in our natural environment”,
  • “Climate action”,
  • “Research and innovation”,
  • “Investing in a green future”

A central objective: to bring together ideas, support the outdoor sector and make new proposals visible

In addition to gathering ideas from the European outdoor industry and supporting its ambitions for environmental improvement, this document is a means of developing a clear strategic direction for ENOS. It will provide great support for its members, helping them to orientate their future projects and actions.

Benjamin Billet, the General Secretary of ENOS, speaking about environmental issues at the European Parliament of Strasbourg.

The Position Paper also encourages members to make these new proposals visible at national and international events. This was the case when Benjamin Billet, Secretary General of ENOS and employee of the European Centre for Nature Sports, spoke at the European Parliament in Strasbourg during the EUFP conference “Towards a green and sustainable deal sport”. The Outdoor Sports Euro’Meet 2022, which will be held from 14 to 16 September in Silkeborg (Denmark), will be an opportunity to fulfil this ambition. You yourself are invited to share your knowledge and practices in the field of outdoor and sustainable development by responding to the various calls of this event: workshop facilitation, posters exhibition, applications for awards