World Youth Day will be 100 per cent zero-carbon

World Youth Day (WYD) in Madrid will be an environment-friendly and zero-emission event. 100% Natural is the program that will provide a framework for all the sustainable activities carried out during World Youth Day which express a commitment to holding a pollution-free WYD.

Leaving a Planet Earth in good conditions to future generations is a concern for every Christian, and therefore, for World Youth Day as well," said Eva Latonda, Director of the project 100% Natural.

Zeroemissions, the Abengoa company providing global solutions to fight climate change, will calculate and compensate the direct emissions of greenhouse gases, inevitable in the case of massive events – which will occur during World Youth Day 2011 through voluntary carbon credits. Abengoa makes this contribution in its capacity as patron of the Madrid Vivo Foundation, an institution made up of diverse individuals of social importance and the most influential Spanish companies, which has been working actively in support of WYD.

"We are delighted to collaborate with this project. This practice of voluntary offset of emissions is increasingly more common and is setting a trend in events that bring together a large number of people. For example, it has already been done at the Vancouver Winter Olympics 2010 and in U2 concerts," affirmed Emilio Rodríguez Izquierdo, Director of Zeroemissions.

Carbon credits are a tool referred to in the Kyoto Protocol. These credits are generated in sustainable projects that, without the financial assistance involved in the acquisition of these credits, would be impossible to carry out. In the case of WYD in Madrid, carbon credits will be purchased in five projects, each on a different continent: a field of wind energy in New Caledonia, a small hydropower plant in Honduras, a reforestation project in Uganda, and two projects for methane recovery in landfills in China and Turkey.

Other examples of sustainable initiatives under the umbrella of 100% Natural include: the launching of an online application for car pooling that will connect young people travelling to WYD by car or other transportation with others seeking a way to attend, but who do not have transportation, in order to reduce the number of vehicles; the creation of a “sustainable route” from Madrid to Cuatro Vientos, to encourage pilgrims to move from point A to point B in a pollution-free manner (walking or on bicycle); and the installation of energy-generating bicycles at Cuatro Vientos so that WYD participants can recharge their mobile phones, laptops, mp4 players, etc.

Work is also underway, with the help of the City of Madrid, on the issue of waste management through a network of collection points.

For more information see the WYD site at:

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