20080813 beijingleed - Beijing LEEDS the way to Sustainability
U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson presents the LEED Gold Award to Chen Zhili, head of the Beijing Olympic Village. (Photo courtesy BOGOC)

The Beijing Olympic Village received a LEED gold award from the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, certifies that buildings have met a set of criteria for sustainability and energy efficiency.The LEED gold award was presented to Chen Zhili, head of the Beijing Olympic Village, on Wednesday by U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson. Chen said the presentation affirmed the cooperation between China and the United States in clean energy technology for Olympic Games.

More than 16,800 athletes, coaches and officials of national teams are living in the residential section of the village – in 22 six-story buildings and 20 nine-story buildings that were constructed using environmentally-friendly paint and other materials.

The Beijing Olympic Village uses solar cells and geothermal heat pumps to supply energy to the buildings. The buildings feature solar heat, solar hot water, solar thermoelectric cogeneration, and intelligent control devices. They consume just 1/30th of the energy consumed by conventional buildings, according to the contractor, Guoao Investment Company.

Through a heat exchange system, the Village is projected to draw 7.89 million kilowatt hours of renewable energy from the Sun during the Olympics and slightly less in the years after the Games are finished and the buildings are used to house other residents.

The system taps energy from Qinghe sewage treatment plant and upgrades it through heat pump devices for winter heating and summer cooling. The technology can save energy by over 40 percent compared with ordinary air-conditioning systems.

In the Village, solar energy collecting tubes have been installed on rooftop gardens. The system can meet hot water demands of 16,000 users during the Games and some 2, 000 households after the Games. The project can save 5 million kilowatt hours of electricity a year,

The wastewater in the Village is being recycled and the 200 tons of water recycled daily is used for landscape watering in the Village.

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