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Our #PlanetaryPromise to help the environment

We're backing the National Lottery's campaign and believe the sport and physical activity sector can help tackle climate change.

20th April 2021

by Nick Evans
Head of planning, Sport England

This week the National Lottery launched a special campaign to encourage all of us to make a #PlanetaryPromise to do our bit for the environment. 

As an organisation, we’ve been making a positive contribution to the environment for many years by creating and protecting the spaces and places where people are active, making them available for everyone to enjoy and supporting their environmental sustainability.

We want to make the choice to be active easier and more appealing for everyone because when we move, we’re stronger – and our communities and environment are stronger too.  

Two women enjoy a walk on a nice, wide path

Earlier this year, we launched our new 10-year strategy to transform lives and communities through sport and physical activity. Uniting the Movement focuses on five key big issues, including active environments.  

This means collaborating with our partners to influence how people live and travel, and promote the sustainable planning and design of new communities and sport and leisure facilities.  

Our #PlanetaryPromise is to continue making sport and physical activity an easy choice for everyone and we’ll use our expertise, guidance, tools and support to make this happen. 

Recent research, that was commissioned by us, has found that:  

  • if the whole of England walked as much as London, 1.3 million more people would achieve a daily walk 
  • if the whole of England cycled as much as Cambridge, 10% of all transport trips would be cycled. 

During the past year, walking and cycling have been popular choices as many people were required to stay local during the pandemic.  

To help our nation continue these activities, the sport and leisure sector must support those who develop and manage local environments.  

Our #PlanetaryPromise is to continue making sport and physical activity an easy choice for everyone and we’ll use our expertise, guidance, tools and support to make this happen.

The 10 principles of Active Design we developed with Public Health England to promote healthy design can be used to encourage active lifestyles and maximise the potential of local green spaces.  

If our communities are more walkable and facilities are in easy reach of each other, we can help people to improve their health and reduce their carbon footprint through better design and by using the built and natural environment around us. 

The sport and leisure sector can also rise to the challenges of climate change in the design and management of sports, recreation, and leisure facilities.  

Sustainability helps to drive down running costs and protect against extreme weather and flooding that regularly affect sports across the country, stopping play each season.   

We’ll be updating the resources available on our website that can help sport and leisure organisations tackle climate change, drive industry innovation and do their bit for our health, communities and environment.  

We know there’s already a keen interest in environmental sustainability across our sector and a willingness to promote change to help meet our nation’s net-zero targets.  

As part of the National Lottery family, the #PlanetaryPromise we make today can make it as easy and as beneficial as possible to be active in our communities in the next 10 years and beyond.  

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