AC Alert for July 17, 2012 The Real Issue at the London Olympics

Jul 19, 2012 9:20 PM ET

The US media made the American Olympic team’s uniform country-of-origin [manufacture] the number one issue this week as we approach the start of the games. As example, on Friday afternoon July 13 this nationwide story cleared the wires:

“The U.S. Olympic Committee is defending sponsor Ralph Lauren's uniforms for the opening ceremonies at the London Games after it was revealed that American athletes will be wearing clothing manufactured in China. The controversy erupted this week after reports emerged that the clothing unveiled by the American design company sport ‘Made in China’ labels, generating heated criticism from lawmakers and human rights activists.

"The U.S. Olympic Team is privately-funded and grateful for the support of sponsors said USOC spokesman Patrick Sandusky. However, Representative Steve Israel, D-New York, said there was still enough time for the uniforms to be made in the United States.” (Source: CNN)

Given the sense of national pride associated with the Olympic Games, it is understandable how some people in this country would prefer that the uniforms be made in America. However, there are a lot more serious issues being addressed this week as London prepares for a huge influx of visitors, and AC editors have been bringing you this information for many months in a special Hot Topics London Olympics section.

These articles cover vital and urgent matters such as security preparations, transportation difficulties, hotel prices and projected economic impact. We’re betting that many people reading this AC ALERT have heard very little about those matters in relation to London’s big show! Therefore, we’re taking the opportunity to share some of them with you, as a reminder that staging the Olympics involves a lot more than just making team uniforms!

Olympic security firm calls for back-up as thousands of troops are put on standby
(Source: The Independent) The military has been told it may need to provide an additional 3,500 troops to provide security during the Olympics amid fears the world's largest private security firm may not be able to provide enough trained staff in time.

Olympic security chaos: depth of G4S security crisis revealed
(Source: The depth of the crisis over G4S's Olympic security preparations became increasingly clear last week as recruits revealed details of a totally chaotic selection process and police joined the military in bracing themselves to fill the void left by the private security contractor.

NBC Universal expects to lose money on London Olympics
(Source: Los Angeles Times) NBC Universal is expected to lose money on its coverage of the London Olympics. David Joyce, a media analyst, has predicted NBC could lose more than $100 million on the London Games. NBC Universal is paying US$1.18 billion for the television rights to the event, part of a long-term deal that was negotiated in 2003 when General Electric Company was majority shareholder of the broadcasting company.

London raises bar on greening the Games
(Source: Reuters) More than 200 hectares of land have been razed and redeveloped for the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, and 45 of those have been given over to creating new wildlife habitats for a variety of fauna. The urban park project is one of Europe's biggest in 150 years, part of London’s efforts to keep its promise to make the Games the greenest to date.

London 2012 Olympics: how the Games will boost the UK economy by £16.5bn
(Source: Construction, tourism, jobs and the happiness effect from the London 2012 Olympic Games will leave a British legacy.

London 2012: Olympic hotel prices fall by 25 per cent
(Source: Telegraph) Average room rates in London between July 27 and August 12 are up 75 % vs. the same time last year, but down significantly from earlier this month. Hoteliers in the capital had been widely criticized for trying to cash in on an anticipated influx of visitors this summer.

This is just a sampling of the information in our Alert. Go here for the full text of this alert, and more information on Sustainability, and other Accountability related topics.