"Can You Really Build a Sustainable Olympics?"

The Summer Olympics which begins Friday, July 27, 2012, in London proudly aims to be the greenest Olympics ever. It's a lofty goal. But critics challenge whether it will succeed, or whether any Olympics can avoid negative environmental impacts.

"From the beginning, Olympic games have left behind physical traces, whether in the form of the ruins at Olympia in Greece or, in modern times, in host cities dotting the world. Stadiums, stands and podiums often stay in place long after the last competitor has left the locker room.

Mark McDonald recently reported on the unused and dilapidated Chinese venues, which, just four years ago, during the 2008 Beijing summer games, seemed so shinny. Embarrassingly, the organizers of the Montreal summer games in 1976 didn’t finish construction on some of the venues until well after the athletic competitions were over.

The ultimate sustainable architectural mark of the Games may be not leaving a mark at all.

The 2012 London Games, which has made sustainability one of its watchwords, is focused on reducing the lasting imprint of the venues that house the events."

Christopher F. Schuetze reports for the International Herald Tribune's Rendezvous blog July 22, 2012.


"London 2012 Hopes To Win Medal For 'Green Olympics'" (digibet.info)

"The Greenest Olympics Ever -- But Is It Good Enough?" (Business World)

"London 2012 Falls Short of 'Greenest Ever' Targets, Report Shows" (Guardian)

"Is Green The New Gold In Sustainable Olympics?" (Forbes)

"When Beijing Cleared the Air" (Green/NYT)

Source: International Herald Tribune, 07/24/2012