the ambitious promise of “100%” renewable electricity

The first “village” in the history of the Olympic Games, with its wooden huts, had electricity, guarantee of a certain modernity to welcome the athletes of the 1924 edition, already ping through Paris and its surroundings. A century later, the organizers of the 2024 Games promise to play the role of“accelerator for France’s energy transition”. The event must make it possible to electrify uses, while sidelining fossil fuels.

All sites will be supplied with electricity “100%” renewable, according to the promise of Paris 2024. The organization intends to bet on wind and solar power, in conjunction with producers on French territory. But the wind and the sun – intermittent by nature – sometimes forfeit. So, it will also be necessary to obtain supplies in other ways.

However, on the wholesale market, the origin of the energy is impossible to establish. The only certainty: nuclear power still dominates French electricity production (nearly 63% in 2022), far ahead of hydraulics (11%), fossil gas (almost 10%), then wind power (8.5%) and solar (4%).

The decryption: Article reserved for our subscribers Paris 2024, “positive” Olympic Games for the climate? An impossible promise

The Organizing Committee for the Games has found a solution: it will use the system of “guarantees of origin”, valid throughout the European Union. This standard compensates each megawatt-hour consumed by purchasing renewable electricity injected elsewhere on the network.

Not without paradox, the organization first considered a partnership with TotalEnergies. Faced with the skepticism of the mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, it was necessary to give up the oil and gas multinational – even though it is starting to invest in renewables. This 33e edition of the Summer Games will finally have the EDF group for “premium partner”after an agreement formalized in November 2019.

Second paradox: to respect the initial promise of the organizers around wind and solar, the electrician will have to turn away from all its nuclear fleet, yet the main low carbon source of the country.

During the competition, the company will also have the status of “official supplier” gas. This will, in principle, be “biogas for residual uses”ures Frédéric Lebrun, deputy director of energy for Paris 2024. For example, for domestic hot water at the international distribution center in Le Bourget (Seine-Saint-Denis).

No more diesel

For the official fleet, the Japanese sponsor Toyota speaks of a “multi-technology approach”without specifying the share of “electric vehicles” and that of “hybrids” to recharge.

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