Going for gold with green at summer Olympics | Sheila Long O’Mara

The upcoming 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris will be one of the cleanest events in the world games’ history, and the mattresses and furniture used by the athletes are playing a role in the decarbonization.

Leading into the event, organizers in Paris pledged to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions in comparison with recent Olympic games.

A report from MIT’s Sloan Management Review cites the city’s fast-paced move to reduce emissions and says Paris accomplished its goals in a seven-year span. In 2017, both Paris and Los Angeles were in the running to host this summer’s event. Paris edged out LA, and the International Olympic Committee said Paris’ commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by half of the average amounts emitted during prep for 2012 games in London and the 2016 event hosted by Rio gave the City of Lights the advantage.

The mattresses for the more than 16,000 athletes are being supplied by Japanese mattress brand Airweave, which allows each athlete to tailor the mattress to preferred needs. The mattresses also are completely recyclable.

It’s true what you’ve read that the world’s premier athletes competing in the upcoming 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris will be sleeping on cardboard beds. Those beds have been made by Airweave in France, and after the games, the frames will be recycled in France.

Instead of finding their way into a dump somewhere after the games, the mattresses and pillows from Airweave will be donated to a range of public and private organizations and schools throughout the country. Beneficiaries include the French Army, Paris Opera Ballet School, Emmaüs and Ecole Hôtelière, and TSUJI Culinary Institute Group for use in dormitories and military installations where troops are deployed in France.

The Airweave mattresses aren’t a one-size-fits-all bed; instead, they’re customizable. No worries that basketball player LaBron James’ 6-foot, 9-inch, 250-pound frame and gymnast Simone Biles’ 4-foot, 8-inch and 104-pound body would be sleeping on identical mattresses.

Airweave says its mattress offers three blocks in different firmness levels — soft, moderate, firm and extra firm — that allow athletes to set the bed to meet their personal sleep preferences. The mattress cover and the inner blocks of the mattress are washable for easy cleaning and the ability to send the beds off for a new life following their Olympic debut.

The mattresses, constructed of 100% recyclable materials, contributed to Paris’ commitment to reducing its carbon footprint for the games.

Sustainability and recycling are getting a lot of attention here in the U.S. from mattress makers, and there’s still a long way to go. That said, it’s cool to see a mattress company taking a role in the Olympic games where sleep and performance can be tied together and in a sustainable manner.

See also:

  • 3 key bedding trends continue into High Point Market | Sheila Long O’Mara
  • Sustainability conversations spark a few green thoughts | Sheila Long O’Mara

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