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Bioregional Olympics:

Environmental "Greenwashing" of 2002 Olympic Winter Games

Background Documentation

Index of Materials

1. The Olympic Movement and the Environment

2. "Report and Recommendations" written by the Materials and Resource Management Working Group

3. Guard Fox Watch Monitoring Recommendations

4. Letter from Environmental Advisory Committee

5. Ecological Standards for Activities Prior, During, and After 2002 Winter Olympic Games In Salt Lake City

6. Letter from Diane Conrad

7.Guard Fox Watch Call to Action (Summer 2001) 

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1. The Olympic Movement and the Environment

Introduction

Aware of its responsibility and in accordance with the fundamental principles set out in the "Olympic Charter", the IOC, in its capacity as coordinator of the Olympic Movement, has resolved to broaden its field of action in environmental matters and to make it the third dimension of Olympism, after sport and culture. For that purpose, the IOC sees that the Olympic Games are held in conditions which demonstrate a responsible concern for environmental issues, and collaborates with the competent public or private organizations and authorities in the endeavour to place sport at the service of humanity.

The Olympic Movement can rely on the world's greatest sports event to help it to perform its mission in this connection. The Olympic Games are a veritable microcosm, a scaled-down model of our society and the problems that trouble it: heavy and light constructions, permanent or temporary, the purchase, distribution and elimination of products, movement of goods and persons, administration and human resources management. For that reason, the IOC has made a commitment to make this sports event more ecological in cooperation with the Organizing Committees of the Olympic Games.

As early as 1972, the Olympic Movement took its own symbolic initiatives on the occasion of the Games of the XX Olympiad in Munich. The National Olympic Committees from all over the world came with a shrub from their countries and planted them in the Olympic park adjacent to the sports facilities. A German couple, Luzian and Sigrun Verbogen, have put forward by analogy with the expression "mens sana in corpore sano" the formula "certatio sana in natura sana". In other words, a healthy competition in an intact environment. The "Olympic Charter" was also amended to include the protection of the environment among its fundamental principles.

The Earth Pledge

In 1992, when the Games of the XXV Olympiad were celebrated in Barcelona, Spain, the IOC, following the appeal launched by the "Planet Earth" summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, called on all the International Federations and National Olympic Committees to sign the Earth Pledge. The components of the Olympic Movement thereby undertook to contribute, to the best of their abilities, to making the Earth a safe, hospitable home for present and future generations.

United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP)

In 1994, after the closing of the Olympic Winter Games in Lillehammer, Norway, in which the environmental protection was particularly emphasized, the IOC President signed a cooperation agreement with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) to develop joint initiatives in this field.

The Centennial Olympic Congress

The Centennial Olympic Congress, Congress of Unity, held in Paris in 1994, highlighted the importance of this topic by dedicating a whole session to the relation which exists between sport and the environment. This interest was further relayed by the Study Commission of the Centennial Congress, whose recommendations were approved by the 105th IOC Session in Atlanta, USA, in July 1996:

The IOC Session, recalling on the one hand the concerns expressed by the participants at the Centennial Olympic Congress, Congress of Unity, that the Olympic Movement take a leading role with respect to the environment and noting, on the other hand, that, even prior to the Centennial Olympic Congress, Congress of Unity, the IOC adopted and published its policy on the environment, recognizing the unique opportunity provided by the regular celebration of the Olympic Games to emphasize the importance of the environment,
Keeping in mind the action of the IOC in convening the World Conference on Sport and the Environment in Lausanne in July 1995 and the many positive suggestions for action as well as recognition by the world community of the actions and efforts by the IOC in support of protection of the environment,
Observing that many opportunities may present themselves for cooperation with other international and national governmental and non-governmental organizations in activities directed toward protection of the environment,
Firmly believing that IOC policy on environment should be specific to the IOC; that efforts by other groups having goals in the field of the promotion of the environment should be taken into account by the IOC when establishing its policy; that the IOC should not let other objectives supplant its own,
Noting that it is important to bear in mind the specific character of the IOC as an international organization dealing with developed and developing countries; that the evaluation of the environment protection policy as well as of the means of implementing and propagating it in the most efficient way possible must be adapted to the country concerned,
Recalling that there may exist, with regard to specific measures or behaviour, cultural and perceptional differences that should be taken into consideration before any definite position is adopted; that it is important to adopt a foresightful approach to the environment; that, in this respect, education is an extraordinary tool for awakening in individuals an awareness of the necessity of encouraging sustainable development; that some countries may have differing priorities in the field of environment, and that these concerns should be taken into consideration when evaluating behaviour in the field of the protection of the environment,
1. Desires that further efforts be carried out to protect the environment and to educate the youth of the world concerning its responsibility in this regard;
2. Notes that notwithstanding the establishment of the IOC Commission on Sport and the Environment, it must be remembered that the ultimate responsibility for matter relating to the environment rests with the authorities and that the proper role of the IOC is to encourage environmentally responsible conduct."

Furthermore, following the Centennial Congress Study Commission's recommendations, the "Olympic Charter" was modified to include an extensive reference to the environment.

Rule 2, paragraph 10: "(...) the IOC sees that the Olympic Games are held in conditions which demonstrate a responsible concern for environmental issues and encourages the Olympic Movement to demonstrate a responsible concern for environmental issues, takes measures to reflect such concern in its activities and educates all those connected with the Olympic Movement as to the importance of sustainable development."

Requirements for candidate cities

The IOC has included in the specification lists of the bidding cities a chapter relating to new requirements in terms of the environmental protection. Environmental measures are occupying an increasingly large place in the candidature file and are of particular importance in the choice of the host city. The requirements are as follows:

  • Supply charts and brief information explaining the public authorities environment and natural resource management system, and their responsibilities vis a vis the OCOG;
  • Supply a brief survey, including maps and charts, if available, of the local environmental situation with a view toenvironmental health, protected areas, cultural monuments and potential natural hazards;
  • Supply an official guarantee from the competent authorities, stating that all work necessary for the organization of the Games will comply with local, regional, national regulations and acts and international agreements and protocols regarding planning and construction and the protectionof the environment;
  • Have environmental impact assessments been carried out by competent authoritie for all sites and facilities;
  • Supply and environmental key-point action plan for the Games with objectives, goals and priorities, including a brief overview of the OCOG's planned environmental management system;
  • State whether an environmental awareness programme has been created by the candidature committee, and likewise, indicate plans for the OCOG;
  • State the efforts to protect and enhance significant features of the natural environment and cultural heritage during the preparations for the Olympic Games;
  • State which environmental organizations belonging to the candidate city, region and country have been consulted; indicate their size, character and representation; indicate their opinion and attitudes towards the candidature;
  • State the efforts to be undertaken regarding transportation and minimization of the environmental impact arising from air pollution, noise and if, applicable, from infrastructure programmes such as road expansion, etc.;
  • State the plans for solid waste handling, sewage, treatment and energy management, and how you expect this will influence the city and region in the future;
  • Describe environmental pilot or development projects and application of environmentally-friendly technology relating to the Games;
  • Indicate special features which are not covered by this questionnaire and which the candidature committee would like to add.

Conferences

The first World Conference on Sport and the Environment was organized by the IOC in Lausanne from 12 to 15 July 1995, with the cooperation of UNEP. More than 150 participants representing the Olympic Movement, governments, the United Nations system, inter and non governmental organizations, research centres and universities took part in the conference.

Sport and Environment Commission

Following the recommendations of the Study Commission of the Centennial Olympic Congress, Congress of Unity, the President of the IOC established in December 1995 a Sport and Environment Commission, chaired by H.E. Mr. Pal Schmitt, IOC Vice-President, with the goal to advise the IOC Executive Board on the policy to be adopted by the IOC and the Olympic Movement regarding the protection of the environment. It should be noted that the Commission is represented on the IOC Coordination and Evaluation Commissions for the Olympic Games by Mr Olav Myrholt, advisor on environmental affairs, who constantly monitors compliance with ecological requirements.

President:
H.E. Mr Pal SCHMITT
Members:
Mr Gunnar ERICSSON
Mr Gerhard HEIBERG
Mr Willy KALTSCHMITT LUJAN
Mr Shun-Ichiro OKANO
Mr Sam RAMSAMY
Athletes Representative:
Mr Robert CTVRTLIK
IF Representatives:
Mr James EASTON
Mr Paul HENDERSON
Mr Robert STOREY
NOC Representatives:
Mr Julius HAFSTEIN
Mr Jorge HERRERA
Individual Members:
Mr Simon BALDERSTONE
Mr Michel BARNIER
Mr Tore BREVIK
Ms Erika DIENSTL
Mr Mazato MIZUNO
Mr Olav MYRHOLT
Mr Bernard NICOD
Prof. Frieder ROSKAM
Mr Matt SMITH
Prof. Josep TARRADELLAS
Mr Thomas WELCH
Secretary of the Commission and Chief of the section of environmental affairs:
Ms Katia MASCAGNI STIVACHTIS

The Commission outlined a list of priority issues which will guide its recommendations and actions regarding sport and the environment:

Enlargement of the environmental concern to all the Olympic Movement

The Commission points out that it is necessary to achieve environmental awareness not only for the Olympic Games but also for other major or minor sports events. In this endeavour, we should obtain a large support of the NOCs and the Ifs. Therefore, the Commission encouraged the NOCs to set up an Environmental Commission or designate a special officer to follow up this issue at the national level. IFs will also be encouraged to take similar measures.

Guidelines and minimum requirements

The Commission is working on the production of a set of requirements and general principles which, in the middle-long term, should be implemented when organizing any sports events. The aim of this project is: to further enlarge and complete the IOC's environmental requirements for candidate cities; to produce general guidelines for other major sports events; to establish, in cooperation with the IFs concerned, minimum requirements for events in each sport; to produce guidelines for sports infrastructure, planning and building; The Commission wishes to point out that, in determining the requirements and expectations, the world's existing profound differences in economic development and the particular climatological, geographical and environmental characteristics should be taken into account, receiving therefore different emphasis in the industrial countries and in the developing ones.

Educational material

The Commission has given a first priority to education. Among other materials, a new brochure on the Olympic Movement and the Environment, and a page on sport and environment on the Internet have been produced. A manual for National Olympic Committees is also in preparation. This manual will feature how to set up an effective ecological strategy and action plan for NOCs. Moreover, the IOC is working on a more general guide for International Federations, with their cooperation, outlining environment-related problems connected with the holding of major sports events.

Furthermore, the Commission is studying the possibility to produce educational material on CD-ROM and video support, which will present the Olympic Movement's achievements and IOC's policy. The IOC is also studying the possibility to include the theme of the role of the Olympic Movement and of sports organisations in the field of environmental protection in the "Agenda 21", programme of action which was adopted by the United Nations following the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.

Conferences and Seminars

Following the success of the first world conference on sport and the environment, the IOC will organise every two year a conference on this issue to assess the progress made by the Olympic Movement. The second conference will take place from 1st to 2nd November 1997 in Kuwait. Similarly, seminars on sport and the environment will be organized each year in one of the five continents to raise awareness among the Olympic Movement.

National Clean-Up Day

The IOC is studying the possibility to organize in the 197 National Olympic Committees a "National Clean-Up Day" on the occasion of the World Environment Day on 5 June, in cooperation with the United Nations Environment Programme. Several activities such as the removal of rubbish and the refurbishing and maintenance of recreation areas and sports facilities would be undertaken by sports volunteers and the local population.

Cooperation with other organizations

The Commission is planning to work closely with the Olympic Academies, as well as the Coordination and Evaluation Commissions. The Commission also wishes to keep cooperating with the United Nations Environment Programme and the World Federation of Sporting Goods Industry (WFSGI) to promote environmentally friendly projects.

Promotion of national and international athletes as environmental ambassadors

Each NOC is encouraged to identify an athlete who could diffuse the message and raise awareness on environmental protection among the sporting youth. The Commission is planning to cooperate with the World Olympians Association in this respect.

The Media

The Commission suggests to work closely with the media to support public awareness on these issues. Eurosport Olympic Magazine, as well as all the IOC publications such as the Olympic Review, Olympic Message, should provide regular information on sport and environment.

For further information, please contact:
Ms Katia MASCAGNI STIVACHTIS
Chief, Section of environmental affairs
Department of International Cooperation and Public Information
International Olympic Committee
Ch $BcU (Jeau de Vidy
1007 LAUSANNE
VD - Switzerland
Tel: (41.21) 621 64 19
Fax: (41.21) 621 63 54
E-mail: CHCIO3S9@IBMMAIL.COM

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2. "Report and Recommendations" written by the Materials and Resource Management Working Group

First, what we have noted is the sentence described in the section of the Recycling and Waste Management; the vision and mission of this Olympic Games is to establish a materials management system with zero waste. Also, in the section of "Monitoring or measurement," it states as follows;

First, measurable goals must be defined for each source reduction strategy.

Furthermore, in the section of your "Hotel and Restaurant Partnership Outreach" program, it states the following goals;

A) Encourage overall reduction of energy consumption by 10% of current levels.

B) Encourage overall reduction of water consumption by 7% of current levels.

C) Encourage adoption of waste reduction policies leading to a 10% reduction; to include recycling and improved purchasing procedures.

F) A monitoring system will be developed and agreed upon so that each operator will be confidant that all accomplishments are recognized.

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3. Guard Fox Watch Monitoring Recommendations

Subject areas and topics requiring baseline data for measuring various impacts of the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City are as follows:

Energy

The specific amounts of electricity used during a comparable seasonal period within the Salt Lake and Davis Counties, and Park City, Heber City and other municipalities with venues.

The specific amounts of fuel, such as gasoline, diesel, and other petroleum fuel transported into or/and sold during a comparable seasonal period within the above jurisdictions. (These numbers can possibly be traced by checking with district offices of fuel companies.)

Air Quality

Air quality reports for a comparable seasonal period within those counties and municipalities.

Water Quality

The total amounts of sewage treated during a comparable seasonal period within those counties and municipalities.

The total volumes of fresh water used within a comparable seasonal period within those areas.

Chemical and biological test data for natural water courses such as creeks and rivers both annual average and during a comparable seasonal period.

Solid Wastes

The amounts of solid, hazardous and industrial wastes managed during a comparable seasonal period within those counties and municipalities.

Wildlife Populations

Native animal species types and population counts, including migratory birds, both annual averages and during a comparable seasonal period, in the natural areas adjoining outdoor venues.

Planning

What specific new plans or strategies, and laws have been/are being implemented locally to reduce the area's ecological burdens associated with the 2002 Winter Games?

Transportation

The volume of highway and road traffic in terms of numbers and types of vehicles, both as an annual average and during a comparable seasonal period, for the above counties and municipalities.

The volume of aircraft traffic, both commercial and private, and approximate number of passengers, at Salt Lake City's main airport and smaller nearby facilities during a comparable seasonal period.

Employment

The unemployment statistics for the above counties and municipalities during a comparable seasonal period.

Business

The identity of companies/corporations/agencies/ organization within the area which have introduced/obtained any of following environmental action operating plans, such as the ISO 14000 series, Natural Step, Zero-emission project (i.e.Closed-loop Production System), Life-cycle assessment, or/and Environmental Accounting.

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4. Letter from Environmental Advisory Committee

25 August 2000

Peter Berg
Planet Drum Foundation
P. O. Box 31251
San Francisco, CA 94131

Dear Mr. Berg,

On behalf of the Environmental Advisory Committee to the Salt Lake Organizing Committee of the Olympic Winter Games of 2002, I am writing in reply to your letter of 30 March 2000 requesting SLOC's assistance in determining the environmental baseline data needed to measure various environmental impacts during the Games.

You rightly pointed out that there are several areas in which the Olympics can exercise a leadership role in providing examples of how to manage large scale events in sensitive areas, and you identified several key areas where baseline information should be collected prior to, and after the Games.

In an initial reply on 30 March 2000 David Workman provided you with a list of where that information could be collected, and pointed out that it is not part of SLOC's mandate to collect or analyze the information you requested. Following that reply, SLOC received a letter from you suggesting that they take on that task. SLOC staff suggested that the Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC) review your request and formulate a response.

By way of background, the purpose of the EAC is to provide feedback from the conservation community and other interested parties on how to best conduct the Games in a way that is in harmony with the natural surroundings. We give advice, take on projects that require work outside the scope of current SLOC operations, and give feedback on the implementation of SLOC work as it relates to conservation management. Our charter is not so much to direct the work of the Environmental Programs staff, as it is to encourage, support, and assist them, while playing a very important role in bringing outside parties into the process of decision making at SLOC.

From our work with the Environmental Programs staff at SLOC, we know them to be extremely dedicated, hard working advocates for the creation of the most "green" games ever held. Their hard work on the Green Buildings Initiative, the Tree-cology Program TM, and others are representative of that commitment and success.

Such good work takes considerable effort and the Environmental Programs staff is hard pressed to keep up with the responsibilities that have already been assigned to them, as well as responding to situations as they arise. Your request to them is but one of many worthy projects that their staff simply doesn't have time to adequately address, given their current workload.

As an advisory, volunteer committee of SLOC, EAC has neither budget nor staff to do the work you suggest, or other valuable work that may need to be undertaken.

Accordingly, we would invite you and the Planet Drum Foundation to play an additive role to the work of the Environmental Programs staff, by initiating a project to conduct the important research areas you have outlined. If as your letter suggested the research would only require a month's work, perhaps Planet Drum could retain an intern for that project. Following the completion of the research Planet Drum could then work with the EAC and the Environmental Programs staff to ensure that information is used as wisely as possible.

Since SLOC and the EAC will cease to exist after the Games, Planet Drum Foundation could play the key role as a repository of institutional knowledge for upcoming host cities, as they work to improve on what will surely be Salt Lake 2002's impressive record.

Hopefully this letter clarifies the roles that various groups can play in making the Games a success, both for participants as well as for the environment. Thank you for your initiative and leadership on these important issues, and we look forward to hearing from you in the future on the success of your work.

Warmest Regards,

Tom Price, Co-Chair
Environmental Advisory Committee

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5. Ecological Standards for Activities Prior, During, and After 2002 Winter Olympic Games In Salt Lake City

The following areas of activity were chosen to represent the principal types of human interaction with natural systems at the sites of various events. The items listed in each of them were chosen as models to reflect elements of sustainability as well as to effectively minimize human impacts on environments and watersheds associated with the Winter Games. They follow the general ecological principles of:

a) preserving natural environments,
b) eliminating pollution,
c) reducing waste,
d) closing energy loops, and
e) supporting local communities in sustainability efforts.

It is understood that specific applications will vary according to venues and differing support facilities such as restaurants, lodgings, maintenance, and so forth.

Native Species Habitat and Other Natural Features

All roads, walkways, and seating areas located away from native plant and animal habitats. Replacement of any native plant or animal species or habitats destroyed by construction or human traffic and attendance. Provisions made for "wild corridors" through venues so that roaming or migrating animals can move freely. Suspension and rescheduling of events if found to interfere in any way with movements or residence of native animals. Minimization of lighting at night and loud noises at any time. Exclusion perimeters around all natural water bodies and courses, prohibition of dumping wastes into natural standing or flowing water (creeks, ponds, etc.), and re-routing of ground water caused by rain or melting snow at traffic and parking areas, venues, and facilities away from creeks and ponds, during entire period of the Games. Melting of highway snow through means that are not harmful to soil or water organisms. Assignment of specific staff dedicated to oversee the above measures.

Water

Conserved by minimum use, low-flow devices and other methods. Water re-use through dual plumbing systems.

Sewage

Compost toilets.

Energy

Renewable sources for power at all venues and facilities

Food

Locally produced.

Organically grown.

Wastes

Recycling of all materials such as paper, metal, glass, plastic, etc. Food wastes saved for use as compost materials.

Transportation

Elimination of private automobiles throughout Olympic venues. Designation of multiple private vehicle parking facilities in surrounding communities. Free, renewable energy fueled (electric, solar, etc.) buses and mini-vans. Transportation routes from all surrounding communities and Salt Lake City. Large transportation fleet and frequent service.

Materials

Locally manufactured or constructed products for all uses. Priority selection of products made from recycled materials. Re-use of eating utensils.

Employment

Preferred hiring of local residents as employees.

We suggest as a method to accomplish these goals that bidding be arranged for various items among eco-venture businesses, preferably local ones. This could be done in association with an eco-expo of exhibits by these businesses. (Our assumption is that you are still seeking jobbers for pre-Games work and concessioneers to operate during the Games.) They will probably be enthusiastic contributors since their products will be used on-site, which represents an unequaled PR opportunity. We emphasize this point because of the need to overcome financial, institutional and time limitations that could otherwise be obstacles to making the Games as ecological as possible. We believe there is sufficient time to convince SLOC of this plan, to establish which areas and items are needed (which we have briefly sketched above), to publicize or/and advertise through local/national media for recruitment, and to select bids. The following contacts are non-profit groups and an local professor which might be useful to do this task. (Guard Fox Watch is not affiliated with the listed organizations.)

The Natural Step
c/o Kat Preston, HR Coordinator
115 Tiffany Street
San Francisco, CA 94129-0372
Email: kpreston@naturalstep.org
(A non-profit environmental education organization working to promote and accelerate sustainable development.)
Social Venture Network
P.O. Box 29221
San Francisco, CA 94129-0221
Phone: 415-561-6501
Fax: 415-561-6435
(A non-profit membership organization of business and social entrepreneurs dedicated to creating a more just, humane and sustainable society by changing the way the world does business.)
Staff:
Martha Belcher
Acting Presiden
ext. 13
mbelcher@wenet.net
Steve Garber
Operations Coordinator
ext. 12
sgarber@wenet.net
Michael Schilling
Events Coordinator
ext. 11
mps@wenet.net
Edwin R. Stafford
Associate Professor of Marketing
Department of Business Administration
Green Alliance Research Project
College of Business
3510 Old Main Hill
Utah State University
Logan, Utah 84322-3510
Phone: 435-797-3890
Fax: 435-797-2634
edstaff@b202.usu.edu
(A marketing professor at Utah State University in Logan (about 90 miles north of SLC) who researches environmentalist-business collaboration (called "green alliances").

Respectfully submitted by Guard Fox Watch on August 25, 2000.

Peter Berg, Director
Planet Drum Foundation (USA)

Kimiharu To
Deep Ecology Resource Center
Nagano Olympics Environmental Monitoring Organizer (Japan)

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6. Letter From Diane Conrad

Dear Peter and Kim-

First, let me say thanks for taking the time to send along your recommendations for the 2002 Olympic Winter Games to be held in Salt Lake City. We appreciate your well considered and articulated submittal. We agree with all of the general ecological principles set forth in your recommendations. We don't necessarily follow the path you suggest to reach our goals, but we agree on the principles. I don't know if you have heard from EAC on your proposal to be an advisor to the EAC. I would suggest that you contact them directly if you want to follow-up on your proposal. I would like to respond to your suggestions from SLOC's perspective, hopefully elaborating on where we have followed your suggested path, and for where we have not, why not. I have responded categorically as structured in your letter. Three points need to be stressed.

1) Please recall that we won the bid partly on the basis that most of our venues were already built. As such, only 3 building have had to be erected, and only one new outdoor venue, Soldier Hollow cross country/biathlon venue. It had been used for grazing cows. Now that the cows are off the property, the water quality is much improved. Generally, our use of existing venues has had no negative impact and some positive impact.

2) There are always several ways to skin a cat. Some of your suggestions were ones that we've heard before and rejected for various reasons. The Olympics can't be all things to all people, but we can have a goal of net positive environmental impacts from the Games, and find creative ways to get there. 3) Remember that Salt Lake is the largest metropolitan area ever to host an Olympic Games. This is not Nagano. In no cases do we expect anything to exceed the design limits of its system, whether it's sewage, electricity, or transportation.

Native Species Habitat and other natural features

Because we have several "out door" venues, and because the vast majority were already in existence when the bid was won, it's not always possible to locate them away from habitats. I think the goal should be to protect habitat where the two come into contact, which is what we've done. As I mentioned, we have deer, elk and moose habitat near out cross country and our bob/luge track. They are often observed by staff working at the venues. We've had two instances where we had a little more active contact. We had a moose last year decide to take a walk on the bob run, and had to wait for him to take himself off before we could begin the trials. we have also had a red-tail hawk nest on one of our venues in the construction zone, and had to work around her until the fledges left the nest. We had a rare plant that was discovered during the build out of the Snowbasin venue (recall that we are not building it). called the Mcquires draba. That plant was removed for germination elsewhere, and is doing quite well. It has subsequently been discovered in several other areas at the ski area.

At our outdoor venues, we have directional lighting so as to keep the light pollution down. There are noise provisions for some venues, which we will either seek waiver for or adhere to. Generally, the mountain venues will be cleared by nightfall and the majority of well wishers either in Park City proper or at the medals plaza in downtown Salt Lake. As such, noise at the outdoor venues shouldn't be too much of an issue. There are already set back requirements for bodies of water from the Corps of Engineers, and existing laws against dumping wastes in streams. Storm water permits are required for all parking lots, hence storm water is directed into the existing system which varies from venue to venue, but has not been ignored. There are already roads in the area that are salt free for snow removal. Those will be maintained for Games time, of course. We will be assigned environmental compliance officers to every venue for several weeks before and during the Games.

WATER

Where we have built venues, we have used low flow devices. We will be looking into water reuse at the Utah Olympic Park. The proposal for the retrofit for that is expected this week.

SEWAGE

It's not feasible to use composting toilets, since they are not available as portable units at all, especially in the quantities necessary. We will be trucking sewage to sewage treatment plants, or tying in to an existing line. In no case will the amount of sewage exceed the design limits of the system.

ENERGY

It's not possible to use renewable resources for every venue, since most are already built without them. However, SLOC has a 0 emissions goal which we will achieve through our Cleaner and Greener program. One of the components of that program will be the ability of households to buy green power and donate it to SLOC. On the energy front, we will be exemplary.

FOOD

Food is a sponsored item, and will not be locally produced. Some may be organically grown.

WASTE

SLOC has a 0 waste goal. We fully intend to achieve that goal through careful planning and engineering of the waste stream, recycling, composting and potentially a trash to steam facility.

TRANSPORTATION

It's not possible to eliminate autos from the venues, since they are so far apart and mass transit in Utah is in the shape it's in. We will be bringing in about 1000 busses, 100 of which will be CNG. Those will replace downtown busses, so that we keep air pollution levels down. Our Air Quality plan, recently competed, shows that there will be no air quality impact from the Games. We fully expect that, like LA and Atlanta, we will have an improvement in air quality during Games time.

MATERIALS

Most materials are locally manufactured, since this is a large industrial area, and it's easier and cheaper to buy locally where possible. Our eating utensils will either be re-useable or they will be compostable.

EMPLOYMENT

We already hire locally since then we don't have to pay moving costs. That's the case for volunteers as well.

So, as you can see, we are either already undertaking most of your suggestions, or have found along the way that what you have suggested isn't feasible, and we are addressing the issue in another environmentally friendly way.

Thanks again for your suggestions. I'm glad that you're willing to work with us to bring about the greenest games yet.

Sincerely,

Diane L. Conrad

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7. Call to Action:

Help Guard Fox Watch Create an Ecological Winter Olympics

We need your support to reduce the heavy environmental impact of the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. What we do to transform the Olympics can have an influence on all outdoor sport spectaculars that trample natural places. 

The Winter Games mainly occur outdoors, and often in near-wilderness surroundings. Because they require snow and steep slopes, pollutants from thousands of vehicles and hundreds of thousands of spectators have direct access to watersheds and habitats. Everything ends up in creeks, rivers, floodplains, and soil. Other major hazards directly related to the Games include increases in snow-melting chemicals on roads, invasion of open space, disruption of plant and animal populations, and air pollution. Water, waste, sewage, energy, and transportation facilities of nearby small towns are strained to the breaking point. 

Guard Fox Watch investigated and reported these conditions at the 1998 Nagano Olympics. We visited Salt Lake City in 2000 hoping to avert the same situation. 

We observed the major outdoor venues and wrote guidelines for the local organizers to establish baselines for measuring impacts. They were ignored. Then we drafted recommendations for sustainable practices at the Games, and they were rejected as well. An account appears in the enclosed news story, "Nobody Wins if Nature Loses." (Full documentation of this process can be seen at www.planetdrum.org

There is still time before the Games begin in February 2002 to put pressure on local organizers to adopt meaningful measures instead of their "greenwashing" tactics. Please sign the support statement below and send it to Guard Fox Watch c/o Planet Drum Foundation, P.O. Box 31251, San Francisco, CA 94131, Shasta Bioregion, USA. It will enable us to prepare a full statement for Olympics representatives and the general public. (Financial donations are also welcome) 

Guard Fox Watch
Summer 2001

*******

I want stronger environmental safeguards at the Salt Lake Winter Olympics, and support Guard Fox Watch's efforts to reduce impacts and create a model of sustainability. 

Name: ___________________________________
Organization: ___________________________________
Address: ___________________________________
___________________________________
___________________________________

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