Blog

MAD Review_Thumbnail

Commission launches final report – Making a Difference

March 20, 2013   |   Posted by Jemma Percy

Tags: , , , , , , ,

The Commission for a Sustainable London 2012 (CSL) has today published its final report, which looks at the sustainability achievements of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and whether these successes can be replicated in the UK and beyond. Entitled Making a Difference, the report concludes that while there have been some excellent examples of action to embed the lessons learnt from the Games, for example, through the Government’s on-going support for the 2012 Learning Legacy web portal, there is still more to be done. The Commission’s findings point to two main factors holding back widespread adoption of sustainable practice in the UK: firstly, slowness in government action in embedding sustainability in government procurement; and secondly, the need for more independent oversight to ensure that sustainability targets in all sectors are met. The Commission has recommended the Government revisit advice to embed sustainability into the construction sector, and that major projects open themselves up to independent scrutiny of their sustainability commitments. Also examined are issues relating to corporate sponsorship, which raised some unresolved ethical concerns during London 2012. The use of forced labour and excessive working hours in supply chains remain a problem for many industries as a whole. …

Commission statement on BP Target Neutral programme at the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games

March 19, 2013   |   Posted by Jemma Percy

Tags: , , , , , ,

The Commission has completed its assurance of BP’s Target Neutral Programme. BP was appointed by London 2012 as the Olympic and Paralympic Games offset partner for official travel. In addition, BP established a voluntary programme which offered to offset travel related carbon emissions for spectators, London 2012 corporate partners and the wider ‘Olympic family’ such as athletes and country delegations. The Target Neutral Programme: “…is an initiative that provides information and tools primarily through a website (www.bptargetneutral.com) but also other channels such as Facebook, to support the reduction of carbon footprints. The information and tools are structured around three topic areas: ‘Reduce, Replace and Neutralise’. Participants are encouraged to reduce their travel emissions, for example by replacing car journeys with public transport, by driving ‘smarter’, driving less and maintaining vehicles better. Participants are also encouraged to consider new fuel-efficient vehicle technologies such as high efficiency engines and improved tyres, or products that may support vehicle efficiency such as “BP Ultimate Fuels” and BP’s “Castrol” lubricants. The ‘Neutralise’ stream encourages participants to offset the carbon emissions from unavoidable travel, and provides the facility to offset”[1] The Commission for a Sustainable London 2012 (‘CSL’ / ‘The Commission’) decided to conduct assurance of …

They think it’s all over

November 14, 2012   |   Posted by Shaun McCarthy

Tags: , , , , , , ,

I was eight years old when England won the world cup in 1966. I can’t claim to remember the oft repeated commentary from Kenneth Wolstenholme “They think it’s all over – it is now” as Geoff Hurst completed his unique hat-trick to beat West Germany 4-2 in extra time but of course this is now the stuff of legend. Team GB and Paralympics GB made an equally legendary contribution to our sporting heritage. Maybe the choice of a lion as a mascot has something to do with it; Team GB and Paralympics GB had Pride the Lion and in more innocent times in 1966 we had World Cup Willie. They think the London 2012 Olympic Games are all over but from a sustainability point of view this is the end of the beginning. Today sees the release of our report entitled “London 2012 – From vision to reality“. It documents the fantastic effort made by my team to get to practically every Olympic venue with the exception of the football stadia. Not bad for a team of four people in a few short weeks. We also visited live sites, logistics hubs, waste transfer stations and numerous other “back of house” …

Inspire a generation signage

Inspire a generation – to greater sustainability?

September 6, 2012   |   Posted by Jonathan Turner

Tags: , ,

London 2012 promised that the Games would “inspire a generation”. During the Olympic and Paralympic Games we have been looking at what this means for sustainability. I recently met with some of the team working on what LOCOG call “look and feel”, which includes everything from signage and way finding to all the banners throughout London and the messages that these are used to convey. Some of the figures involved with this are quite remarkable. 100km of fence scrim (the material used to wrap a fence with) have been used. That’s enough to wrap a fence running all the way from the Olympic Park to the Channel Tunnel. 3,500 flags have also been used to display logos and messages aroundLondon and Olympic and Paralympic venues. This got me thinking about the materials they are made from and what will happen to them post-Games. Maybe this makes me a ‘sustainability geek’ but someone has to think about these things! LOCOG have been thinking about it too. For example, they worked with their supplier to source alternatives to PVC and specified that that supplier to take everything back and recycle it. In some cases, they used a different material to ensure the …

Move right down inside the cars

September 5, 2012   |   Posted by Shaun McCarthy

Tags: , , , , , ,

As we continue to cheer on ParalympicsGB in their superhuman effort to overhaul their record medals tally in Beijing, it is time to start applauding another slightly less obvious superhuman effort by Peter Hendy and his team at Transport for London. The doom mongers predicted disaster, London’s creaking Victorian transport system would not be able to cope with the vast numbers visiting London for the Games. It all worked well during the Olympics despite these gloomy predictions. “Ah”, said the cynics “wait until the Paralympics in September, the kids will be back at school, everybody will return to work, then the system will go into meltdown”. The theory was that everybody who was not interested in the Games stayed out of town in August but they would all return in September and the system would be unable to cope. On the Tuesday of the final week of competition this has not happened to date. My team travelled to all London venues and found the tube lines to be very busy as they often are at peak times. The Docklands Light Railway struggled a little and there were some queues but nothing like the queues of several hours that were predicted. …

Athletes Village canteen

Let’s spend the night together

July 16, 2012   |   Posted by Shaun McCarthy

Tags: , , , ,

It is some time since I was invited to a slumber party so the opportunity to be part of LOCOG’s commissioning event for the Olympic Village was very welcome. They invited around 1,000 guests to spend an evening in the Athlete’s Village and to stay over in one of the apartments. A great honour and I thank LOCOG for inviting me along. On arrival we were transported by bus from Stratford station, my bus driver let his engine idle while we were waiting which is against LOCOG’s policy but I was assured by my fellow guests that their busses had their engines switched off. Let’s put that down to fate, the one bus I happened to take had the engine running. Bad luck rather than bad planning hopefully. Progress through security was quick and efficient, the massive temporary structure had no air conditioning but it was very cool from natural ventilation and there was plenty of natural light. My first impression and an over- riding impression of the whole event was how friendly, helpful and well informed the staff were. There was always somebody there with a smile able to help. This contrasted slightly with my experience in Beijing where …

Athletes Village

Village People

May 1, 2012   |   Posted by Shaun McCarthy

Tags: , , , , , ,

It was great to take our Commissioners on a tour of the Olympic Village and many thanks to Nigel Garfitt, Tony Sainsbury and the team from LOCOG for patiently showing us round and giving us their valuable time so close to the Games. The first impression of the experience is high security, we had 3 separate ID checks to get into the Village and for specific buildings. Nigel is the director responsible for the Village and many other aspects of the Games, his pass did not have the correct date so he was refused entry until the error had been corrected. I appreciate that a large amount of additional security is necessary to ensure the Games are safe but our Commissioners have expressed concern that  additional scrutiny may continue in wider society after the Games and infringe the civil liberties of the most watched nation on earth. There has to be a balance after the Games. The Village is the first to be located within walking distance of the main competition venues and the excellent public transport links to central London will provide a great experience for athletes of the 208 nations who will descend on us in less than …

121105 Aerial shoot_Olympic Park

Assuring a legacy?

March 14, 2012   |   Posted by Shaun McCarthy

Tags: , , ,

It seems a long time since London was announced as the host city for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games and those of us involved in the sustainability aspects of the bid tried to work out what a body to assure the sustainability performance would be like. We started with the rather cynical notion that there is no such thing as a sustainable Games, it is not possible to justify the gross consumption of resources to support a sporting event. We can only call London 2012 sustainable if there is a sustainable legacy. We think of legacy in terms of the environmental, social and economic legacy, primarily for East London but also for the UK as a whole, we also think about the legacy of learning and how this is applied in a wider context. The track record of past Games is patchy, the Olympics helped to put Barcelona on the map as a world city and helped to regenerate the east dock area, the legacy of Athens is almost non-existent and Sydney has done well after a slow start. Beijing is emerging with a legacy of sorts but time will tell. The time has come to consider London 2012 …

Website archived by CRIS at RHUL