Tokyo 2020 teams up with P&G for sustainability venture

The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games (Tokyo 2020) has joined forces with Worldwide Olympic Partner Procter & Gamble to launch its latest venture to utilise the events as a means to promote sustainability.

Tokyo 2020 has called on Japanese people to provide household plastic waste, aiming to recycle this to produce the podiums that will be used during award ceremonies for all events at the Games.

From Friday, collection boxes for discarded plastic will be provided in more than 2,000 retail outlets of AEON, a major Japanese retail chain. AEON will forward the plastics to P&G, the global consumer goods company, who have been appointed as a partner company in the project after signing up as a gold partner of the Paralympics back in August.

P&G will manufacture podiums with the plastic provided by Japanese citizens and plastic waste collected from the ocean. Tokyo 2020 aims to collect as much as 45 tons of plastic. The collection will end when sufficient plastic has been collected to manufacture the podiums.

While Japan, along with the United States, did not sign up to the G7’s ocean plastics charter in 2018, Tokyo 2020 has sought to use the Games to showcase to people in Japan and around the world practical solutions that address real global sustainability challenges.

Tokyo 2020 established the sustainability concept of the Games as ‘Be better, together – for the planet and the people’, and is running numerous sustainability projects under this banner. Olympic and Paralympic medals will be manufactured from precious metals recovered from used consumer electronic appliances such as mobile phones.

Meanwhile, Operation BATON is a project involving the construction of the Village Plaza at the Olympic Village using timber donated from regions all over the country. The timber will be returned to local authorities for re-use after the Games.

The podium will be unveiled in or around June 2020. After the Games, it will be used as an educational tool, promoting the Olympic and Paralympic Movements.