Quick before the Vancouver Winter Olympics are over, I wanted to write this blog…
In 2008, Beijing tried very hard to make the Summer Olympics as environmentally-friendly as possible. Now the Vancouver Winter Olympics are being compared to those efforts. And in terms of sustainability and greenness, Vancouver is pretty impressive. For a good overview of all the Vancouver green initiatives, click here for all the details on the Olympics web site.
The Vancouver Olympics are the first to incorporate sustainability into their mission statement and fully embed sustainability into their operations, everything from green transortation, to buildings and green sponsors. The Vancouver Olympics organizers have used energy-efficient technology, clean energy and carbon offsets. And it all started very green on day one when Wayne Gretsky clutched a recyclable torch as he rode in a hybrid pickup en route to ignite the natural gas Olympic flame.
The Olympic Village buildings were all LEED certified (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified projects adhere to a strict set of building standards to improve energy efficiency and sustainability) and will be turned into mixed-use mixed-income housing. The buildings were also fitted with solar panels and “green-roofs” that will use a rainwater collection system to become self-sustaining. Many buildings used local wood from trees that were destroyed by storms. The Richmond Oval, where the speed skating took take place, was constructed using wood from trees that had been destroyed by a beetle infestation. Continue reading