While we love the heat of Olympic competition, the incredible athletes and nonstop sports, we are definitely loving the behind the scenes efforts to preserve the environment. With around 4 billion people tuning in from more than 200 countries, the chance to encourage change is as big as it gets. Back in the day, London made a radical proposal in order to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games. The city became the host with the promise to have the first truly sustainable games. And to that we say “Nice!” The whole sustainable theme is centered on the campaign ‘Towards a One Planet 2012.’ The campaign is guided by certain principles to encourage the world to live within its means. Partnered with BioRegional and WWF, the London Olympic committee made enormous strides in the name of sustainability.
If you haven’t heard the good word yet, the Olympic Venues are a combination of leveraging existing buildings or courts and constructing new, sustainable arenas. For example, the basketball venue utilizes 20,000 square meters of recyclable PVC fabric. In fact, once the entire competition is completed the venue will be dismantled and reused. Compared to the Beijing Olympics, the new Olympic stadium used one tenth of the steel. This year is already a step up.
Keeping it Clean
Other than the Olympic venues, the London Olympics are doing what they can to help relieve other key issues such as transportation, food and waste. They guesstimate that up to 14 million meals will be served in the next few weeks, and new standards were put in place to support sustainable food procurement. Some of the standards included compostable packaging. And when it comes to travel, London has invested in better walking and cycling routes so people can ease up on public transportation and go the healthy route.
When all is Said and Done
According to the original proposal, the city wanted a solid 20 percent of the Olympics’ power to be from renewable sources. They actually fell short of the lofty goal, but reports are saying that roughly nine percent of on-site energy is renewable, and we’d give ‘em a fist bump for that. Even The New York Times was reporting on the magnitude of London’s efforts to be green. NYT stated that a conference at the White House recognized the incredible embrace of energy efficiency, conservation, recycling and spreading the necessary message to help the environment this Olympics. What’s even cooler to us is the enormous efforts have been to bring together the finest athletes and revitalize communities everywhere. These Games are designed to rejuvenate the planet and inspire people.