The London 2012 Olympics is calling itself the ‘greenest games ever’ after it emerged that the athletes are using recycled water.
In an effort to cut the water usage at Olympic Park by more than half, the water that is used to water plants and flush toilets is all recycled. A special purpose built system is turning sewage into pure water and so massively cutting down on resources and energy costs.
In stark contrast to the Beijing Games, London has had to make some large cost concessions due to the economic recession that has since gripped the world.
The main source for water in Olympic Park is the £7 million Old Ford Blackwater recycling plant. Having cost Thames Water £7 million to set up, it produces 574,000 litres of non-potable water a day from north London sewage.
That is enough for 80,000 toilet flushes, and enough to sustain the Olympic athletes. It is also using a dual supply network to avoid using intensively treated drinking water where it is not needed.
The head of innovation for Thames Water, Rupert Kruger, said: “It is amazing to think the elite athletes of the world are using recycled sewage, sent down U-bends at homes in north London just a day or so earlier, to flush loos at the greatest sporting event on earth.”
Meanwhile the UK water minister Richard Benyon said such water treatment projects had a crucial role to play in creating the greenest games ever. By using blackwater, which is safely recycled, the Old Ford plant is only using fresh water where it is absolutely necessary and creating a sustainable water supply for the future.by