The Commission for a Sustainable London 2012, the independent body set up to monitor and assure the sustainability of the London 2012 programme, has today published its Annual Review 2010.
The review, entitled Game changing? starts to answer the fundamental question of whether the London 2012 programme will be sustainable. This is done using five main areas: construction, infrastructure, event, communities, and making a difference.
The Commission has seen some excellent progress this year, with the ODA continuing their exemplary performance in construction and LOCOG responding well to the Commission’s recommendation from our 2009 Annual Review about setting specific targets for a sustainable event. LOCOG have a tough challenge to deliver a very wide range of targets through a diverse network of partners and there remains much to be done but progress is good so far. Whilst the Commission has been critical of the GLA City Operations plans to date, there are encouraging signs through their commitment to comply with BS 8901 and the addition of a full time sustainability resource to their team.
The Commission is reasonably confident that the carbon targets will be achieved but the amount of renewable energy production contributing to this will be lower. The Commission is assured that the ODA has extensively explored the opportunities to achieve the 20 percent renewables target using financially viable solutions and is satisfied that the alternative investment programme will enable the ODA to meet its commitments.
We have continually expressed our regret that wider infrastructure in East London which would enable organic waste to be used to generate biogas has not been delivered. We welcome the OPLC’s work to manage these issues in legacy and look forward to a more positive outcome in the longer term.
Finally, the Commission has always maintained that, taken in isolation, delivering the Games is an inherently unsustainable thing to do. Given this, it is essential that the inspirational power of the Games is harnessed to make a tangible, far reaching difference. So far the signs are good, with a comprehensive learning legacy being produced by the ODA, a new sustainable event management standard and the Government promising to replicate the ODA procurement standards in Government procurement. The Commission also believes that our work has contributed to making a difference. Our role is unique and we believe we have developed a valuable model for other major projects to follow.
So – will London 2012 be sustainable?
With hindsight, some key early decisions and actions could have enabled even higher standards. Whilst there is still much to do, we are currently confident that London 2012 is on track to deliver unprecedented levels of sustainability.