Nike’s sustainability content series “Talking Trash” is back with a new episode diving into how climate change is affecting the future of sport, especially cold-weather activities. Marine biologist and climate expert Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson sits down with snowboarder and Olympic gold medalist Chloe Kim to discuss the drastic impacts on snowfall and temperatures, the effects Kim has experienced in performance and training, and ways to unite for change.
“The climate crisis is affecting my sport and athletes all over the world. Real snow has become a luxury. We need to use our voices and work together to make change happen,” said Kim in the video.
The window for ideal training and competing conditions continue to shrink. As Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson notes, snow seasons are “shorter and less reliable” with a 30% decrease in snowpack in the western U.S over the last century. This trend will see us lose places with conditions cold enough for winter sports within 30 years. It’s also not a concern only on sport – this of course affects other areas like the drinking water supply, which is dependent on snow melt in many places.
The red flags have been waved and concerns voiced loudly. Included in Nike’s “Talking Trash” series are ways individuals can come together and help instill change for a better tomorrow. A list of resources and youth-led organizations that are taking action are also featured, including Youthtopia founder Melati Riyanto Wijsen and OneMillionsOfUs founder and executive director Jerome Foster II.
Under its Move to Zero initiative, the Swoosh also provides information about the connection between sport and a stable climate. Tips on how we all can individually help accelerate climate solutions are also found in the first “Talking Trash” episode where Dr. Ayana Elizabeth Johnson speaks with singer and songwriter Billie Eilish on acting locally for global change.
“You don’t have to know all the scientific details and technical terms. Just focus on moving solutions forward using the power of your voice, vote, dollars, network, and your skills,” said Johnson who is also a founder of the non-profit think tank Urban Ocean Lab, co-founder of the climate initiative The All We Can Save Project, and co-creator of the podcast How to Save a Planet.