Help map environmental activity in British racing – online questionnaire now open

20 Jan 2022 BHA Features Financial/Political

An online questionnaire has opened today to help map environmental activity, expertise and interest across British racing and breeding.

The questionnaire forms part of the wider assessment of progress on environmental sustainability, commissioned last year by industry leaders and initiated and funded by the Racing Foundation.

The scoping work seeks to establish the extent of sustainability-related activity across racing, while identifying the key risks and challenges presented by climate change and how racing can develop evidence-based solutions.

The questionnaire can be completed here and runs until Monday 14 February.

It is open to everyone working in or involved with British racing, and can be completed on behalf of an organisation (e.g., yard, stud, racecourse or business) or by individuals interested in or knowledgeable about environment sustainability.

Responses will be used to build an overall picture of projects and activity already underway across racing and breeding, whether that’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions, manage resources more effectively, or improve land usage and biodiversity.

The questionnaire will also help determine the scope for future projects and where support might be required, together with questions around land usage, current environmental reporting requirements and the potential impact of climate change on racing and breeding.

Brant Dunshea, BHA Chief Regulatory Officer and Project Executive Sponsor, said:

“Capturing the activity already underway across racing and breeding is a key element of our sustainability scoping exercise. This is essential if we are to measure our current progress and identify areas where there are opportunities for further progress.

“There are numerous examples of where organisations and individuals are taking positive steps to reduce emissions, manage key resources and embed environmental sustainability more generally in their business practices.

“I encourage anyone with interest, knowledge or experience in this area to complete the survey and help us collate some of this important activity. Thank you in advance for your help.”

Rob Hezel, Chief Executive of the Racing Foundation, said:

“As an industry, it is vital that we tackle environmental challenges if we are to future-proof racing for future generations.

“The results of this survey will build an understanding of where we currently are, informing industry leaders and allowing them to adopt a strategic approach to the issue.

“Everybody has a part to play in responding to climate change and it is important we collaborate across the industry to build this picture accurately. I therefore ask everyone to please complete the questionnaire to help racing to respond effectively on this crucial issue.”

Notes to editors

  1. The questionnaire can be completed here.
  2. About British racing’s sustainability project

The information collected through this questionnaire will be used to support British racing’s initial assessment into the sport’s progress on environmental sustainability, which aims to inform the industry’s long-term planning.

Responses to the questionnaire will be reviewed by sustainability consultancy, White Griffin, which is working with the environmental sustainability project group to deliver the project objectives

Initiated and funded by the Racing Foundation, the project seeks to build a clearer picture of ongoing initiatives, while identifying some of the key issues, risks and opportunities for racing.

The key project objectives are:

  • To review British racing’s current progress on environmental sustainability, building an understanding of current and planned activities
  • Identify the main sustainability issues, risks, and opportunities for British racing, including potential scenarios and timeframes
  • Present an initial assessment of where issues might remain the responsibility of individual organisations / businesses, or where collective action may be necessary
  • Make a series of recommendations about what steps racing could take to start embedding environmental sustainability in its overarching industry and individual business strategies.

More information about the project is available here.

  1. About the Racing Foundation

In 2012 the Racing Foundation was established to oversee the distribution of funds to charitable causes within the racing and thoroughbred industry following the sale of the Tote. Since inception it has awarded £25.7million in grants. People, equine welfare, community engagement and environment and emerging issues are the key areas of focus in the latest strategy.

The Trustees of the Racing Foundation are Julia Budd (Chair), Linda Bowles, Susannah Gill, Mark Johnston, Louise Kemble, Alice Page and Algy Smith-Maxwell. The British Horseracing Authority, the Horsemen’s Group and Racecourse Association are the three joint Members of the Racing Foundation, which is registered with the Charity Commission as a charity under the law of England and Wales (no. 1145297).