Sustainable Development

Cycling: the very essence of sport and the environmentally-friendly means of transport par excellence.

The Tour de Romandie is committed to sustainable development and accepts the environmental responsibilities that result from its activities.

Cycling already enjoys a “green” image in public opinion; it represents the very essence of sporting endeavour and is the environmentally-friendly means of transport par excellence. It is therefore important for the TDR to maintain and merit this positive image for sustainable development.

It does so not simply to follow the current trend or to satisfy the demands and requirements of sponsors, cantonal authorities, the UCI or the OIC in terms of applying the principles of sustainability in Olympic projects, but because respect for the principles of sustainability is a universal duty, particularly for the most important sporting event in French-speaking Switzerland.

The TDR goes « Green »

Firstly, in 2009, the Management of the TDR commissioned the International Academy of Sports Science and Technology (AISTS: www.aists.org) in Lausanne to carry out an “inventory” and take stock of the current situation regarding organisation of the TDR and sustainability issues, in order to assess what still needs to be done to make the TDR “greener” in the near future.

Thanks to its collaboration with the AISTS, the TDR will be able to benefit from the insight, experience and resources developed by the SSET Skills Centre (www.sustainable-sport.org) in parallel with instructions contained in the UCI reCycling Guide intended specifically for the organisers of cycling events.

« GREEN » : a sustainable TDR from the year 2010

In concrete terms, the sustainability strategy of the TDR will be ongoing and dynamic. It is a long-term project that will require lots of effort and resources. The aim however is to deploy these efforts and resources to good effect and as rationally and efficiently as possible.

While a number of responsible initiatives will be introduced during organisation of the 2014 TDR, it has been decided to focus efforts on 2 initiatives in particular. They are meaningful and concrete initiatives that will affect all three spheres of sustainable development.

These 2 initiatives, described below, are interesting in that they filter through the entire organisation of the TDR. Environmental, social and economic aspects (reducing the impact on the environment of transporting waste; health promotion, community integration, etc; integrating local public transport companies, cost reductions, economic and tourist promotion, etc) are fully taken into account through these 2 initiatives.

1) Waste management

Why? The objectives of this first priority initiative for the 2014 TDR are mainly:

  • To reduce the amount of waste generated by the TDR: at an administrative level, exhibitor stands, sponsors in the advertising caravan, along roads, etc.
  • To minimize the quantity of waste to be collected, cleared, cleaned and incinerated.
  • To ensure the collection and selective sorting of waste: availability of bins in the stage start/finish villages, working with the road maintenance authorities of towns hosting stages, etc.
  • To make the most of the TDR’s influential position to improve education and public awareness of waste management (advertising campaigns, posters, etc.).

How? The TDR is seeking to put in place arrangements that will:

  • Involve local committees in towns and cities hosting stages, road maintenance services, sponsors and partners.
  • Set up appropriate areas for the selective sorting of waste (sufficient number of accessible bins, signposted and explained, etc) at stage start and finish sites.
  • Organise a clear and precise educational campaign: explanatory panels, ambassadors on the ground, posters, etc.
  • Link, for example, this initiative with a schools project in every stage city.

2) Transports

Why? The objectives of this second priority initiative for the 2014 TDR are mainly:

  • To promote green transportation, car-sharing and public transport.
  • To minimize traffic and parking problems in the centre of cities hosting the start/finish of stages.
  • To reduce the negative impacts of transport on the environment (CO2, etc).
  • To educate the public and raise their awareness and involvement in relation to mobility and health.

How? The TDR is seeking to put in place arrangements that will:

  • Encourage the public and spectators to get around by bike, train, bus or car-sharing, by giving instructions on its website, in the media (radio, TV, press), etc.
  • Provide an opportunity to associations promoting the principles of mobility to benefit from this initiative so that they can get their messages across.
  • Involve, for example, local sports clubs in organising a cycle drop-off service where spectators can leave their bikes while watching an event.
  • Raise public awareness and emphasise the beneficial effects of physical exercise (getting around by bike) on health and wellbeing.