London’s green Olympics

The London Olympics may not have met all of its sustainability goals, but as The Environmental News Network and the London Olympics website point out, they were certainly eco-friendly.

  • Olympic Park was constructed on derelict industrial sites containing hazardous waste and soil contamination. Cleaning up over a million cubic meters of soil before constructing the Park means that the land will be usable for real estate; and the demolished buildings were sorted and recycled or reused on site as fill.
  • Nine per cent of the power for the games was from renewable sources (short of the 20% target but better than the UK’s overall 3% renewable energy use).
  • Buildings used leading edge insulation and draft resistance and could identify unnecessary energy use through energy-efficient technology such as real-time venue energy management systems that sent notifications when energy use went beyond a trigger point.
  • The Olympic Park made good use of green spaces with walking trails and devoted large sections to natural habitat.

Discussion questions

You might want to check out the sustainability section for the London Olympics for some helpful ideas.