Dow Olympic Programs Slashed 5 Million Metric Tons of Emissions

(Photo: The Rio Olympics in 2016. Credit: Diego Maia, Flickr Creative Commons)

by | Feb 13, 2020

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Dow Olympic Programs Slashed 5 Million Metric Tons of Emissions

(Photo: The Rio Olympics in 2016. Credit: Diego Maia, Flickr Creative Commons)

Dow received third-party verification that its programs with the International Olympic Committee reduced more than 5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions to date.

Cumulative reductions came from three programs: Sochi 2014, Rio 2016, and one for the IOC.

In 2014, Dow vowed to mitigate 360,000 tons of CO2 equivalents from the Olympic Games in Sochi. They were the first where the Organizing Committee’s direct carbon footprint had been mitigated before the opening ceremony, according to Dow. The chemistry company’s program implemented low-carbon and energy-efficient technologies across Russia.

One project involved introducing sustainable farming practices, such as low tillage, at four large Russian farms. The Dow Seeds unit worked with several partners on corn, sunflower, and canola crops.

The chemistry company also agreed to mitigate 500,000 tons of CO2e for Rio 2016. Strategic public projects for those Olympic Games entailed:

  • Encouraging the recovery of degraded pastureland, resulting in increased soil carbon sequestration.
  • Introducing precision agriculture technology, seeds, and crop protection solutions in the Mato Grosso region.
  • Adopting cogeneration from eucalyptus and sugarcane biomass to replace fossil fuels at two Dow sites in Brazil.
  • Working with plastic film manufacturers in Brazil, Argentina, Guatemala, Mexico, and Colombia to speed the adoption of Dow technology that could increase manufacturing productivity while reducing GHG emissions.
  • Encouraging polyurethane-based insulation technology adoption in Brazil, Argentina, and Colombia that could reduce building operation energy costs and limit GHG emissions.
  • Modifying formulations for Dow customers in Argentina and Mexico to eliminate the use of gases with high global warming potential from their manufacturing processes.

In 2017, Dow became the official carbon partner of the IOC, which meant delivering a carbon mitigation program to address emissions from the IOC’s daily operations.

Environmental Resources Management (ERM) provided third-party verification of the GHG emissions reductions from Dow’s projects. Braulio Pikman, technical director at ERM, said that the project portfolio generated more than 5 million metric tons of climate benefits in CO2e — 2.8 million from Sochi 2014, 1.4 million from Rio 2016, and 0.8 million from the IOC program.

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