The Olympic Games and the environment

John Karamichas

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


This paper seeks to offer an overview of the possible environmental sustainability legacy that can be bequeathed to Olympic Games host nations. We start by discussing the connection of the Games with those of the past through pageantry, ceremonialism, and the ideals of athletics with which they have been associated since their revival at the end of the 19th century and attempt to identify an environmental link between them. Subsequently, we proceed to determine the moment that the IOC adopted environmental issues in its programmatic aspirations and offer an account on how the incorporation of environmental factors into planning, organizational, and legacy concerns has evolved over time. The next section focuses on providing an answer on the environmental sustainability legacy issue by accounting for the findings from four case studies of Olympic Games hosting: Sydney 2000, Athens 2004, Beijing 2008 and London2012. This is followed by a brief evaluation of the prospects for Rio 2016. We conclude by pulling everything together and delineating the main contours and challenges that lie behind a positive post-Olympic environmental sustainability legacy.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication56th International Session For Young Participants: Olympic values - based learning as an effective tool for environmental protection
EditorsKonstantinos Georgiadis
PublisherInternational Olympic Academy
Number of pages12
ISBN (Print)9789609454421
Publication statusPublished - 2017

Publication series

NameInternational Session For Young Participants: Proceedings

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences(all)


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