Sabrina Filzmoser, left, and Flavio Canto, right, are the new IJF climate ambassadors ©IJF

Austria's Sabrina Filzmoser and Brazil's Flavio Canto have been appointed as International Judo Federation (IJF) climate ambassadors by IJF President Marius Vizer, in a bid to spread the message of environmentalism.

The pair are now expected to talk about global warming and use judo as a positive influence in delivering this message.

"We are happy to see Sabrina Filzmoser and Flavio Canto joining us to bring a message of hope, particularly to the youngest ones, to whom the world of tomorrow will belong," read an IJF statement.

"It is up to us to offer them a home that is in the best possible condition.

"The challenge is great and the obstacles are numerous.

"From massive deforestation, to soil pollution through hyper-consumption, our civilisation has a major impact on the environment."

Filzmoser has competed at two Olympic Games, in 2008 and 2012, and is a two-time world bronze medallist.

She is also a two-time European champion, winning 10 medals at the European Championships in total.

"As judoka, we know how to fight for our dreams, reaching beyond the moon, aiming further than the brightest stars," said Filzmoser.

"We all have a duty to fight for our fragile environment on this planet."

IJF President Marius Vizer appointed both Sabrina Filzmoser and Flavio Canto to their ambassador roles ©IJF
IJF President Marius Vizer appointed both Sabrina Filzmoser and Flavio Canto to their ambassador roles ©IJF

Canto won bronze at the 2004 Athens Olympics and is also a Pan American Games and Pan American Judo Championships gold medallist.

"Judo is about respect, coexisting with others and the planet," said Canto.

"We have a whole continent of plastic, thrown into oceans, killing marine life and extinguishing species.

"We must change what we have been doing."

Canto created a non-governmental organisation in 2003 called Instituto Reação, which promotes human development and social inclusion through sports and education, using judo from initiation to high performance level.

"The IJF is committed to contributing to the global fight against climate change," said Vizer.

"As signatories of the United Nations Sports for Climate Change Action Framework, we are determined to educate youth and raise awareness at all levels and in all corners of the world.

"Using the educational power of judo, we are sure that we can reach many judoka of all ages and mobilise them, in order to bring a solid contribution to the global fight against climate change.

"Sabrina Filzmoser and Flavio Canto are well known for their passion and involvement in many social projects and therefore I am convinced they will show a good example to their fellow athletes, to judoka and judo fans all over the world."