Millions of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified products will be used at the 2016 Rio Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The use of the products at the two events, which are taking place this month and next month respectively, has been enabled by a partnership with the Rio 2016 Committee to increase environmental awareness around the games, and ensure the responsible use of forest products.
All products acquired for the games by the Organising Committee, from structures to stationery, have been FSC-certified.
The FSC said anybody attending the games will almost certainly come into contact with more than one wood-based FSC-certified product and, by extension, will be supporting the growth of responsible forestry worldwide.
All products carrying the FSC label come from forests that are environmentally responsible, socially beneficial and economically viable. The FSC said, through certification, companies are making a commitment to acquire and sell wood-based products that come from responsible sources.
214 organisations have become FSC certificate holders since the Olympics agreement was signed. These include partners from the paper and graphic industries as well as partners in industries including furniture, sawn wood, panels, planks, fibre board, plywood, flooring and tiles.
Other FSC-certified suppliers have been chosen as Olympic torch bearers, in acknowledgement of their work to take care of forests in their region.
FSC-certified structures at the games will include the velodrome track, the golf club facade, 185 Olympic podiums, 191 Paralympic podiums, 93 Paralympic ramps and 5,130 wooden medal boxes as well as flooring, furniture, containers, handrails and partitions used in temporary structures.
FSC-certified paper at the games will include 7.5 million Olympic and Paralympic event tickets, 37,347 awarding diplomas, 5,130 Authenticity Olympic and Paralympic medal certificates, 93,754 participation certificates, 237,877 celebration certificates and the Rio 2016 sticker album.
FSC managing director Kim Carstensen said: “The Olympic Games has a proud history of sustainable sourcing. FSC engagement with the Olympic Games began at the London Games in 2012, and we have maintained contact with the Olympic Committee and subsequent host countries to assist them in meeting their sustainability targets.
“This is a great event for FSC and the world and something that we have been intensely working on for the past year. It has been a dual approach as the Olympic Committee was very interested in collaborating with us since the project was first raised during our initial contacts.”
He added: “We are very proud to be associated with the Olympics because it is a global event with a very important audience that has allowed us to increase sustainable awareness around the games themselves, as well as motivate people to use responsibly sourced forest products.
“The degree of exposure that such an event provides helps enormously to expand the debate in society about the use of responsible forest products.”