Olimpiadi poco ecologiche

No gold medal for the environment in the Athens Olympics - WWF

Gland, Switzerland / Athens, Greece ? The Athens 2004 Olympics have lost any
chances for a medal on environmental performance, according to the first
comprehensive assessment of the costs and benefits of the upcoming games by
WWF. It calls on the International Olympic Committee (IOC) to ensure that
future Olympic host cities strictly abide by official environmental rules
and regulations.

The WWF report, Environmental Assessment of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games,
evaluates the environmental wins and losses of the Athens Olympics based on
the Sydney 2000 Olympics benchmark for ?clean and green? games. On a scale
of 0-4, it rates the environmental component of the Athens Olympics at a
very disappointing score of 0.77. The lowest scores were given to areas such
as environmental planning and evaluation, protection of fragile natural and
cultural areas, waste management and water conservation, and the use of
environmentally-friendly construction technologies. The highest scores went
to the fields of public transport, the improvement of existing
infrastructure, and the promotion of environmental awareness. WWF is
concerned that these wins may disappear when the Olympic Games come to a

?Unfortunately, the environment never figured as a priority in the planning
of the Athens Olympic Games. While the IOC calls the environment its third
pillar of Olympism, it has done very little to keep this from crumbling
under the weight of other priorities,? said Demetres Karavellas, Chief
Executive Officer of WWF-Greece. ?Greece must now move forward and look at
what can be done to reverse the environmental impacts the day after the
According to the report, during the 7 years since Athens won the 2004 bid to
host the Olympics, the organising authorities made no effort to integrate
the environment in the planning mainly due to the fact that the IOC failed
to enforce the environmental regulations enshrined in the Olympics charter.
As a result, the Athens Organizing Committee and the Greek government failed
to deliver on their commitments to abide by basic environmental standards,
such as the use of solar power and recycling and waste management.

WWF calls on the IOC to enforce strict standards not only in sport, but also
in the environment and sustainable development. The IOC must respect the
environmental component of the Olympic Games and ensure the mistakes of
Athens will not be repeated by future host cities. WWF urges the Greek
government to learn from the environmental wins and losses and integrate the
environment in its overall development policy.

?Beyond excellence in sports, the Olympic Games should also be a showcase
for the highest environmental standards and sustainable development,? said
Demetres Karavellas. ?The IOC and the promoters of candidate cities must
ensure they do not leave behind a legacy of environmental degradation.?

For further information:
Theodota Nantsou, Conservation Manager, WWF-Greece, Tel. +30 210 331 4893,
t.nantsou at wwf.gr
Mitzi Borromeo, Press Officer, WWF International, Tel. +41 79 477 3553,
mborromeo at wwfint.org

·          The full report is available at
http://www.panda.org/news_facts/publications/index.cfm .
·          Every score refers to the performance (environmental footprint)
of the seven-year period that has lapsed since Athens won the 2004 Olympics
bid. The scoring procedure was based on a variety of criteria, mainly the
existence concrete and measurable commitments, the achievement of an
integrated approach to particular issues and an assessment of the heritage
to Athens. The experience of previous Olympic Games, mainly those of Sydney
and Barcelona, which in contrast to Atlanta achieved significant
environmental victories, was also considered