Subscribe Here To Get Updates on Giveaways and New Posts!


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Olympics Goes Green!

Now that the host of the 2016 Summer Olympics has been named (Rio de Janeiro), the talk has begun on who will take the bid for the 2022 Winter Games. And besides that there has been even more talk about the changes that are expected to be seen in these future Olympic games.

With the International Olympics Committee naming Andrew Liveris DOW CEO and DOW Chemical as the official sponsor of the Olympics for the next decade, they have taken a serious step towards making the event more environmentally friendly. The IOC President, Jacques Rogge believes the overall commitment that DOW has to advancement, sustainability, and corporate responsibility parallels the Olympic Movement of peace, progress, and international collaboration.

Why are these changes so crucial? As fantastic and unifying as the Olympics are, it's quite a carbon-rich event. It has been estimated that over 2/3 of the carbon emissions from the event is a result of some of the 1.5+ million attendees traveling to and from the event.

USOC members are looking to do more by following the lead of the 2008 Summer Games, held in Beijing. The summer Olympics made great efforts to showcase conservation practices and sustainable energy sources. Exactly what environmentally friendly services did the Olympic facilities feature?

• Solar power - Used to light lawns, courtyards and streets at several venues, including the Olympic Village. A 130 KW photovoltaic system illuminated The National Stadium, where events such as athletics and football were held.

• Water Conservation - Waste water collected from the Qinghe sewage treatment plant was filtered and used for the various heating and cooling needs throughout the Olympics site, yielding a 60% savings in electricity. Rainwater was collected from around the grounds, collecting over 75,000 gallons by using water permeable bricks, pipes and wells installed on roofs, roads and green areas.

• Natural Light - Remember the famous 'Water Cube' where the aquatic events were held? The walls of the National Aquatics Centre provided natural light, and for the interior of the building, specially designed 'beam-pipes' funneled sunlight into corridors, toilets and car parks at venues, including the Olympic Green.

• Recycling - The 2008 Olympic hosts aimed for a 50 per cent recycling of waste including paper, metals and plastics at venues. A modest expectation, considering that a test run carried out during the 11th World Softball Championships held in 2007, achieved a nearly 90 per cent recycling rate.

This green vision that started in 2008, which had great new ways of filtration and insulation for the events, has progressed to include dozens of other products which will help reduce waste and promote conservation. You can expect these products to appear at the coming events over the next decade and be a part of the USOC recommendations and many commentators are reporting whispers that if the United States wins the 2022 bid there will be major steps toward a sustainable and green powered 2022 Olympic games.

Thanks to Nerissa Barry for this great article!


  1. GREAT to hear! I sure hope they surpass the 50% recycling goal though:)

  2. Hey! Thanks so much for stopping by The Green Girl! I just added an RSS subscribe gadget! I'm happy to follow you back. I'm on the hunt for more green blogs!


Thanks for sharing your thoughts with me. Your thoughts and tips are what make this blog shine!