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Saturday, May 10, 2008

Green Olympics

There are only 90 days left before the start of the 2008 Beijing Olympics. That’s 3 more months of waiting, but with all the work that I am putting through right now, I bet time will just blow by. Some of my younger office buddies are gonna take a week off from work to go to Beijing in August. It seems that they do that kind of stuff every Olympics. I did not make plans with them; anyway, I only want to watch the basketball games, which I can do online or via satellite TV. I gotta ask my provider if they’ll be carrying the games. But I bet it’s all included in my Premium package. Well, anyway, I guess the basketball games are already decided and team USA is gonna bring home the bacon. It’s payback time so I bet the NBA stars are gonna go out with guns a-blazing. I just wanna see how many points they win by.

The torch run caused quite a stir, what with all the protests that it met. I just saw a picture of the mascots, by the way. That’s right! Mascots with an “S”. There are 5 actually. And it’s supposed to be symbolic. Why don’t they just stick to tradition and just have one. Well, what can I do. They spent a lot of money so I can’t complain. The Olympics is causing a lot of concerns and controversies. Mass displacement. Human rights violations. Sabotage plots. Boycotts. Protests and counter-protests. Health issues. Even eco-lovers are joining in. I read in an article that during the Olympics, cars within and those in close proximity to the venues as well those that will be used are going to produce zero emissions. Now, that is gonna be one for the books if they’re indeed able to achieve that. Here’s the whole article.

The Beijing Olympic venues will achieve "zero emissions," first in the history of the Games, with the use of more environmentally-friendly vehicles, China's minister of science and technology told reporters in Beijing on Thursday. Automakers and the event's organizers are also experimenting with new-energy automobile technology, including hybrid electric vehicles.

"Te 'Green Olympics' will control the use of vehicles and reduce emissions by between 1 million and 1.29 million tons," Wan told a news conference. Areas around the venues and priority Olympic traffic routes would meet the target of "low emissions" from vehicles. Some 500 clean fuel vehicles to travel in and between the venues, including 50 electricity-powered buses, 400 electric venue vehicles and 15 electric cleaning vehicles, are expected to achieve "zero-emissions" for the first time in Olympic history.

And in a more traditional green approach, solar, wind and geothermal power will also be used at venues and other Olympic-related buildings. Carmakers and authorities were working to have another 105 hybrid vehicles and 23 fuel cell cars and buses in use during the games.

These vehicles would continue to run on the roads as a demonstration project after the games, Wan said, adding that more Chinese cities would use such clean fuel vehicles, especially energy-efficiency hybrids with mature auto technology.

Whoever thought of this should be given an award. Al Gore may have won the Nobel prize for promoting environmental awareness, but these people are actually doing something about it instead of blabbering about it. Things like this snowball, and before you know it events will be organized in that fashion. Here in the US, incentives are offered to promote eco-friendly cars. Employers are doin’ it. So do local governments and even a few automakers. But the existence of green cars is still comparatively rare. Some more steps should be taken to protect the environment.

Source: The Auto Channel