Olympics green plan has “significant gaps”

London 2012 organisers still do not have an energy conservation strategy in place, despite a pledge to make it one of the greenest Olympics, according to the watchdog The Commission for a Sustainable London 2012 (CSL).

Olympic Stadium

That is the warning from the independent body, following a review into how organisers are taking steps to ensure sustainability standards are met during this year’s Games.

The review concludes that while the London Organising Committee had made good progress towards meeting many sustainability commitments, there are still “significant gaps”. It urged organisers to produce an energy saving strategy plan demonstrating how CO2 emissions would be reduced.

LOCOG was last year forced to admit that it will fail to meet a target to use 20% renewable electricity during the Games, after scrapping plans to build a wind turbine at the Olympic park site.

The CSL added that it had not been able to verify organisers’ assurances that London 2012 commercial partners and suppliers were adhering to the official code for the use of the man-made greenhouse gas HFC in both cooling and refrigeration.

Shaun McCarthy, chair of CSL, says: “There has been excellent progress towards a sustainable Games. But there is only one chance to get the Games right, and we’ve identified some significant gaps which need bridging.”

The report follows the departure of CSL board member, Meredith Alexander, last month in protest of Dow Chemical’s sponsorship ties to this year’s Games. The chemical giant’s association with London 2012 has angered human rights groups because of its ties to Union Carbide, the company responsible for the Bhopal gas tragedy in 1984, which killed 25,000 people.

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