Do better than the English…. The competition is not only played out on the pitch. The French ambition for the Paris Olympic Games also focuses on energy performance, with the aim of reducing the carbon impact by 50% compared to the London games in 2012. “All sites will be powered by 100% renewable electricity, underlines François Xavier Bonaille, director of commercial development and Paris 2024 partnership. We will promote this technical expertise and leave a legacy. Moreover, Los Angeles and Milan (which will host the next summer and then winter games, Editor’s note) do not have this expertise.

To achieve this, EDF is firstly banking on eight wind and solar farms, spread throughout the country. A way to ensure that at least one site is capable of producing electricity “whatever the weather conditions”. EDF has put in place a series of measures to guarantee that the electricity consumed will indeed come from these production sites and in particular specific certificates of origin. The sites themselves will ensure part of the production of the electricity they consume. This is the case for the Olympic aquatic center, whose “double-curved” wooden roof will accommodate a 4,600 square meter solar installation. It will provide 20% of the electricity consumed by the site. In the Athletes’ Village, more precisely in the Belvédères district, fifteen building roofs are equipped with solar panels to, again, provide 20% of their electricity.

Also read: The electricity network, the Achilles heel of the energy transition

The parking shade deployed on the Olympic Square in the Village is a temporary foldable structure. It is equipped with a flexible solar skin, a true technological feat developed by a company from the south of France, Solar Cloth. Solar panels will also be installed on the Seine, placed on a maritime container which will house all the equipment necessary for the operation of such an installation. Finally, 800 charging stations will be installed to accommodate the approximately 1,200 electric cars deployed as part of the event. Charging stations, shade and containers for solar panels are temporary installations which will all be reused. EDF will thus recover the terminals for its own use on its sites.

Finally, the Olympic Committee has hunted down generators, equipment which operates with diesel engines used as a back-up solution to produce electricity…. except in events which traditionally favored them over connection to the network. To do this, it was necessary to carry out major work, doubling the connection of the Stade de France to the Enedis network – a subsidiary of EDF. Generators are now emergency installations, as is already the case in hospitals or data storage centers. This development also has the merit of being sustainable and makes it possible to reduce the Stadium’s carbon emissions by more than 90% during an event.