The environmental challenges have reached a central position in the public debate. On February 28, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published a report on the effects of climate change on human societies and biodiversity. On April 4, the IPCC published a report detailing a range of solutions to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The group of experts estimates that humankind has 3 years left to reverse the curve of GHG emissions, if we want to avoid the worst effects of future climate change. In this context, efforts and initiatives are expected at all levels of society, including the political sphere, public society, and the private sector. Thus, many economic sectors are making concrete commitments to protect the environment, and this is the case in the gambling sector.
Background information on the proposal
In the CSR Resolution adopted in General Assembly in 2021, The European Lotteries and its Members recognized the importance of environmental challenges and committed to “carry out their operations taking full consideration of the necessary respect and safeguard of the interest of its stakeholders, society as a whole and operate with respect towards the environment”, as established in the 2023 EL Sustainability Guidelines.
Building on this first important step endorsed by the EL General Assembly in June 2021, and in continuation of the work of the Sustainability/RG Working Group, the EL Environmental Initiative is taken as an initiative which objectives are for EL Members to connect on this subject, work together towards the implementation of concrete actions and allow them, and the Association, to be industry leaders in this field. Through this initiative, EL and its Members can promote and initiate future sustainable business for the benefit of the environment and society.
The initiative’s objective is for EL and its Members to take an active part in the transition of the lottery sector towards more sustainable models, respectful of the environment, consistent with new consumption patterns and taking into account the potential challenges of future restrictive measures that could be put in place at European level to preserve natural resources and limit GHG emissions.
Main objective of the initiative
The main objective is to create a collective dynamic among EL Members around concrete commitments in the environmental field. This initiative, coordinated by the Sustainability subgroup, is proposed on a voluntary basis, and is open to all EL Members. Its goal is to bring together a substantial proportion of Members who would commit to initially 1 or 2 specific environmental actions. As such, the initiative is not striving for another certification; it is a future oriented voluntary commitment.
As the EL Members do not all have the same means and maturity in the field of environment, a step-by-step as well as flexible approach is necessary. Regarding the first two environmental actions, various levels of commitment can be proposed to enable EL Members to recall their existing commitments, commit on new actions or to join at their pace over time. It will also benefit from the returns on experience of more experienced Members.
The first two proposed environmental initiatives
The first two environmental initiatives are identified;
- Use of paper coming from certified sustainable forests (FSC, PEFC) for gaming material (including scratch tickets): using paper that is harvested responsibly is a natural commitment, considering the impact that lotteries’ scratch ticket activities have on forests and the environment.
- Monitoring of greenhouse gas emissions: the monitoring by participating EL Members of their carbon emissions associated to their gaming activity, with the goal of quantifying their impact on the environment, and further, define individually goals for their reduction, is also a natural step to address climate change issues.
To support those lotteries with less resources to reach those initiatives, EL has put in place, together with its partner DigitalRG, a support programme including e-modules, access to the DigitalRG platform, free use of a carbon emissions measurement tool and individual support on request. For more information, please contact Mélissa Jacquérioz (firstname.lastname@example.org)
September – December 2023: Confirmation by EL Members of their voluntary commitments in the initiative
December 2023 – June 2024: SUPPORT PACKAGE / Members who need it will benefit from the support package
March and June 2024: Publication of EL Dashboard to show progress
June 2024: Deadline for fulfilment of first commitments and discussion on possible addition of new commitments
 The United Nation Intergovernmental body responsible for advancing knowledge on human-induced climate change.
This commitment form allows each lottery to commit to (a) specific environmental action(s)