London 2012 aims for most sustainable games as Olympic Park is FSC certified

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Velodrome uses sustainably sourced timbers

Velodrome uses sustainably sourced timbers

London 2012 is on course to achieving its aim of being the most sustainable games with the announcement the Olympic Park is now officially Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified, reports the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA).

More than two-thirds of all wood used in the Olympic Park’s construction is now FSC certified. Two examples of how the ODA used the FSC process include the development of the Olympics Village and Velodrome. Village developers used the certification process to ensure they achieved the desired Code for Sustainable Homes and BREEAM assessments, providing evidence the timber comes from legally compliant, responsibly-managed forests, the ODA said.

The Velodrome, the first Olympic Park venue to be completed, has an outer cladding which uses 5,000sq m of western red cedar timber. According to the ODA, 56km of surface timber, sourced from sustainably-harvested Siberian pine, was laid to form the track itself.

This represents a tremendous commitment by the ODA to ensuring the wood it uses comes from forests that are responsibly managed, the Authority said.  

ODA principal sustainability manager Holly Knight said: “We started working with the FSC early in the design process to ensure we had the right systems in place to deliver homes and venues on the Olympic Park that are truly sustainable. On such a complicated site it took lots of dedicated people to make sure we received certification for 100% legal and sustainable timber. FSC’s contribution forms a major part of this achievement.”

FSC director general Andre de Freitas said: “FSC certified forest operations are environmentally appropriate and socially beneficial. It’s fitting an event which is committed to excellence like the Olympics choose FSC, which sets a high bar for forest management towards a legacy of stewardship.”

Charles Thwaites, executive director of FSC UK, said: “FSC UK is delighted the Olympic Park has achieved FSC Project Certification for such extensive and complex site. A project of this scale proves that developers, given the sort of commitment seen here, can always find sufficient certified timber for their needs.”