london olympics 2012 – new world order agenda

LONDON OLYMPICS 2012 – A NEW WORLD ORDER AGENDA: A presentation of evidences that allow for informed consideration of the possibility that the 2012 London Olympic Games (27 July – 12 August) may very likely be utilised to manifest a "False Flag Operations" orchestrated/staged "terror" event (whether "live" or "foiled") as a deceptive means to advance the totalitarian globalist agenda beyond the level which the 9/11 & 7/7 events laid the foundation for. Beware the ongoing "Strategy of Tension" of the New World Order puppetmasters. FALSE FLAG OPERATIONS: "False flag (aka Black Flag) operations are covert operations designed to deceive in such a way that the operations appear as though they are being carried out by other entities. The name is derived from the military concept of flying false colors; that is: flying the flag of a country other than one’s own. False flag operations are not limited to war and counter-insurgency operations and can be used during peace-time."; STRATEGY OF TENSION: "The strategy of tension is a theory that describes how to divide, manipulate, and control public opinion using fear, propaganda, disinformation, psychological warfare, agents provocateurs, and false flag terrorist actions."; "It is a tactic which consists in committing bombings and attributing them to others. By the term 'tension' one refers to emotional tension, to what creates a sentiment of fear. By the term 'strategy' one refers to what feeds the fear of the people towards one particular group" – Daniele Ganser (French radio interview, December 29, 2006)



London 2012: A Rubbish Olympics…

by Mike Wells

2012 Olympics contamination warning marker layer being installed

The Giant Cover-up: the Warning Marker Layer covers up to a million square meters of contaminated ground on the Olympic Site

“The Olympics is a great brand.” So says David Higgins, Chief Executive of the Olympic Delivery Authority. One of the words Higgins would not like attached to his brand is – rubbish. Yet rubbish features large in relation to the London Olympics. The Main Stadium, Basketball Arena, Velodrome, and the Media Centre are all built on rubbish, or to be more exact former rubbish dumps. Most of this rubbish (with associated contamination) remains under these venues.

Documents submitted for planning approval reveal that the ground below the Media Centre is still producing so much methane from the decaying refuse it contains that special precautions should have been taken to protect the expected 20,000 visiting journalists and media.

picture showing extensive area of this private dump at Hackney

Rubbish Foundations: historic photograph (c1930) of the rubbish dump that remains below the Media Centre


Two documents (excerpt from one shown below) warned of buried radioactive waste near the site of the Basketball Arena and Velodrome, close to the Athletes’ Village – yet the authorities ignored the possibility of widespread contamination until radioactivity was found in excavated material some months after works began.


From contract for construction of Eastway Cycle Circuit 1974. Extensive dumping of radioactive waste across the site was never considered in remediation plans.

Then at the site of the Main Stadium, significant quantities of radioactive contamination were unknowingly excavated and spread around other areas of the site. Documents also acknowledge that further contamination remains buried beneath the stadium.

In a bid to prevent a rubbishing of the Olympic brand London 2012 bosses have been at pains to play down the issue of the radiation hazard and its poor management. For example, in February of 2008 when radioactive waste had been inadvertently excavated, a PR distraction strategy was hatchedwith all the parties involved, which included the claim:

“Highly-sensitive monitoring has been carried out on the site during the earthworks programme and this has detected a small amount of low level radiological finds in the soil in the area. This soil, with mild radioactive properties present due to the past industrial activity over the last 100 years or so, is being managed so that it presents no risk to public or workers.”


In fact, excavations at the Main Stadium site were virtually completed before any radiation monitoring or protection measures were introduced – despite its history as a high-risk unregulated private landfill. When radiation was detected in the excavations in November 2007, no action was taken, and it was not made public. Only in February 2008 were the relevant authorities alerted and remedial and protective measures started. Meanwhile a delegation from Beijing visited the location – where far from ‘mild radioactive properties’, detection equipment was registering off-scale readings. Since surveying first started on the site, mysteriously high levels of background radiation had been consistently recorded.

The ODA claim that “Health and safety of the workforce and local people is our number one priority.” Yet the failure to carry out a detailed and comprehensive radiological investigation prior to starting earthworks would suggest otherwise.

Paul Charman, analyst with the Citizens Intelligence Network, expresses his concerns:

“It has become clear that the real priority is the avoidance of negative PR and of any delays to the delivery schedule – and the less that was known the better. The ostrich-like approach led to real injustice and left the workforce and local population vulnerable.”


Olympic stadium radioactivity plan 

X marks the spots – handwritten annotations show locations of hotspots of radioactive material, still present up to 4 months after the ‘early start’ on the stadium construction. ‘LLW’ refers to waste requiring regulatory control and offsite disposal to the national LLW Repository. Click on image to enlarge.

Olympic spin-doctors are also keen to play down the fact that more than 7,000 tonnes of radioactively contaminated material has now been reburied on the Olympic site. The potential for bad publicity makes the reburial of this material a surprising choice. Paul Charman comments

“Taking this PR risk looks to have been unavoidable . The waste includes material that could not be disposed of to any landfill in the country and may well have been refused even at the specialist radioactive waste repository at Drigg. The conditions for acceptance at Drigg would also have meant external scrutiny – which could have been highly damaging. Reburying it on site looks like a gamble they had to take.”



Olympic radioactive waste dump location

The Olympic radioactive waste dump is just to the north of the Main Stadium – a top athlete could cover the distance in 25 seconds. Note proximity to waterways

There are a number of irregularities about the on-site burial of radioactive contamination. The authorities appear to have colluded to place the problem outside regulatory control. They did this by claiming higher activity material was to be mixed with lower activity material, thus reducing its average radioactivity to below the legal threshold – a process of dilution. The Environment Agency prohibits this type of dilution for the purpose of avoiding regulation. Furthermore documents show that when the burial actually took place there was no physical mixing of contaminants, rather they were simply placed one on top of the other in a hole in the ground. Surprisingly this was approved by the Environment Agency – who subsequently claimed to have deleted the relevant records.

John Large of the nuclear consultants Large & Associates, who is presently assessing the Olympic Site radiological situation comments:

“Mixing the radioactive wastes with lots of non or low radioactively contaminated soils etc scraped from around the Olympic site is nothing more that sharp practice – it defies national government policy that radioactive wastes should be concentrated and contained and not, as is the case here, diluted and dispersed.”


Before and after London won the Olympic bid officials were telling us that the Games provided an ‘unprecedented opportunity’ to clean up this highly contaminated area of East London. In reality what has been done is to leave unknown quantities of contamination in the ground and then to cover the majority of the 200 hectare site with a warning sheet of orange plastic. On top of this has been placed a ‘separation layer’ of supposedly clean material. As a consequence, any future excavation work will require special precautions, and any excavated material is to be ‘treated as contaminated unless proven otherwise’.

With regard to the legacy use of the Olympic site, John Large notes:

“After all of the Olympic razmatazz has passed this very long-lived radioactive waste will remain, it will require management and safeguarding for tens, hundreds and more years, and its presence will blight the use and future development of the Olympic site.”


The spectacular effort made by Olympic spin-doctors to divert our attention from these details looks very similar to the orange plastic sheet: a gigantic cover-up of rubbish. The Olympic zone remains officially classified as a brownfield site. Potential bidders for the Media Centre, for which expressions of interest are currently being sought, should heed the small print:

“Contaminants are likely to be present in many forms, for example, solid, gaseous, liquid as well as deleterious forms (asbestos) and therefore future works should take into account this possibility. Remnant ground conditions may be hazardous in nature…”


Note: All information in this article is taken from documentary evidence.




Tonnes of radioactive waste casts doubt over London’s Olympic stadium legacy

• Presence of waste on site could complicate redevelopment after 2012 Games

Olympic sites

Developers are concerned a complete reassessment of the London Olympic site would have to be carried out before any future work could go ahead Photograph: Olympic Delivery Authority/EPA

The development of the Olympic site in east London after the Games have finished could be in jeopardy because of radioactive waste buried beneath the site, experts have warned.

According to a Guardian investigation, any development of the site risks unearthing a hundred tonnes of radioactive waste dumped at the former landfill site decades ago. Documents obtained under Freedom of Information (FOI) rules reveal that, contrary to government guidelines, waste from thorium and radium has been mixed with very low-level waste and buried in a so-called disposal cell close to the Olympic stadium – about 250m to the north.

After the Games, the demolition of the Olympic stadium in Stratford to make way for housing is a possibility because government and sporting authorities so far have been unable to agree on its future use. Despite a possible bidding war between AEG, which runs the O2, and Live Nation to possibly turn the stadium into a music venue, bookmaker William Hill recently made demolition of the Olympic stadium 5/1 third favourite behind its continued use for athletics or conversion into a home ground for West Ham United. “There seems to be no obvious usage for the stadium after the games,” a William Hill spokesman said.

But while officials insist there is no risk from the waste to athletes or spectators during the event, further development of the site could expose the waste, which some experts claim should have been moved to a safe site.

John Large, an independent nuclear analyst, said: “The Olympic site’s hurried and unplanned development may have resulted in a great deal of public harm to the local communities remaining around the site. Overall, there is some doubt about the applicability and validity of the radiological risk analysis undertaken for the future legacy use.”

His sentiment is shared by Andrew Boff, a member of the London Assembly and Conservative spokesman on the Olympics. “I thought the £9.3bn cost would provide a remediation level sufficient for future development. But what we are left with is remediation which is just enough for us to hold the Games. The ODA is very proud that it came in under budget on remediation. I wish it had spent the whole amount and made the site fit for the future.”


Boff is tabling questions for London mayor Boris Johnson on the Olympics site. He wants to know if the mayor will commission an independent review of the way in which radioactive material has been disposed of and he also wants the mayor to ask the Olympic Park Legacy Company, responsible for transforming the site into a lasting metropolitan area once the Games are over, to investigate the additional costs of remediation that may be required for redevelopment.

Developers are concerned that a complete reassessment of the site would have to be carried out for any future work to go ahead. Steve Wielebski, divisional development director at Miller Homes and a leading authority on contaminated land, said any housebuilder will want to examine any contaminated land carefully before constructing new homes.

“There are many safeguards put in place by the planning and regulatory regime, which ensure that a finished development is fit for purpose. However, if a subsequent development represented a change of use to a more sensitive end-use, for instance the construction of houses with gardens, then the developers would need to go through the whole process again of assessing the potential risk to end users,” Wielebski said. “No house builder will compromise on safety.”

The Olympic Park Legacy Company said: “Our assurance from the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) is that the land has been remediated to the highest possible standard.”

The site where the world’s greatest athletes will compete in two years’ time was once home to several dirty industries working with thorium and radium and also home to a number of landfill sites, where illegal dumping of toxic waste was commonplace in the 1950s and early 1960s. Although the Radioactive Substances Act of 1960 tightened the law, dumping was allowed to continue for another three years.

In July 2008, the ODA told the Environment Agency that it had found 40 cubic metres, about 50 tonnes, of waste that showed radioactive readings up to three times higher than the levels at which waste is treated as exempt. But it argued that when put together with 1,500 cubic metres of material that was “definitely exempt” this would bring the whole waste into the exempt category.

The Agency accepted this argument in July 2008. By the time the waste was buried on the site three months later the total waste had doubled to about a hundred tonnes and the total exempt waste had risen to 7,500 tonnes.

“Overall contamination levels in the waste at the Olympic site is within exempt levels. The waste has been correctly disposed of and no rules, or laws, have been broken,” the Environment Agency said.

Much of this information is contained in a dossier of hundreds of documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act by campaigner Mike Wells and intelligence analyst Paul Charman, who have spent more than three years trying to establish what has been going on at the Olympic site where 28,000 documents have been submitted for planning approval.


The dossier has been reviewed by John Large, who has been engaged to analyse the data. He said: “As part of the on-site assaying, the ODA contractors were clearly separating out exempt waste from non-exempt batches of low-level waste with the intention, then, of sending this higher [radio]activity non-exempt waste to a radioactive waste disposal site, such as Drigg [in Cumbria].”

He continued: “At the best, this might be interpreted as a misplaced interpretation of the radioactive waste regulations or, at the worse, some might view it as blatantly cooking the books to save on the high cost of off-site radioactive waste disposal.”

The ODA denied that it had misinterpreted or manipulated data and Allan Ashworth, the principal consultant who oversaw the remediation work on the Olympic Park, said it was the Environment Agency that had encouraged the elevated radioactive waste to be kept on site in a disposal cell. “EA guidance says the waste should stay on site and Drigg should only be used where strictly necessary,” Ashworth said.

Asked about Ashworth’s claim, the EA said: “The waste did not go to Drigg because it is so low risk.”

The discovery of so much waste has prompted John Large to call for an independent review to remove any doubts about risks that workers and former site residents may have been exposed to.

But the ODA director of infrastructure and utilities, Simon Wright, said: “The Olympic Park and all venue sites are completely safe with no radiation measurements above the normal background levels that people would experience in their everyday lives.

“We have been open and transparent about the contamination found on the Olympic Park site, a former industrial landfill site. As previously announced, a small amount of soil containing traces of very low-level radioactive material, classed as ‘exempt’ under current environmental law, has been safely buried in a cell on site … using a proven, safe and approved method of disposing of such material.”

• This article was amended on 21 June and 12 October 2010. The original said that the waste in question had been buried “under, or close, to the Olympic stadium”, and a sub-heading said that this could render the Olympic site useless after the 2012 Games. This was initially corrected to give a distance of 500m from the stadium. The ODA subsequently confirmed that the distance was 250m. The text above has again been corrected.


London 2012: Legacy or Liability?

By Paul Charman and Mike Wells

After spending hundreds of millions of tax payers’ money on a high profile ‘clean-up’, it has become clear that the 2012 Olympic Park actually remains classified as a contaminated brownfield site.

Documents show that the whole area is to have as little as 2 feet (60cm) of “clean” material placed on top of a warning marker layer of orange plastic fabric sheeting, of a type called Terram 1000,  covering almost all the Park site. Photographs of the layer being installed can be viewed on the ODA’s planning website here , here, and here .

While selected areas below this level have been treated, the land comes with no guarantees if disturbed as part of future development.  Anything which involves digging into this separation layer will require special procedures to be followed, including protective measures for workers.   Future contractors are warned that excavated material is to be considered contaminated unless proved otherwise.

This warning is well founded given that carcinogenic asbestos-laden material has been left in place in many areas, the levels being so high that the soil would be classified as Hazardous Waste if excavated during future construction activities. The asbestos limit for ‘fill’ material being used in site preparation is right on the borderline of being Hazardous Waste at 0.1% – 20 times higher than the ‘clean’ material being used at the surface. Even the material at the surface has been permitted to contain levels of asbestos 5 times higher than the 0.001% level widely accepted as giving rise to hazard if blown into the air and inhaled.

Radioactive contamination of unknown extent has been left in place next to the Main Stadium, as well as in the remainder of the old West Ham Tip in the area around the Velodrome and adjacent to the Olympic Village.

A report on preparations for the Velodrome confirms ‘significant residual risks’ of the presence of radiological material during construction, maintenance and decommissioning, as well as other ground contaminants:

Saving on landfill charges by retaining or reusing contaminated material has led to potentially serious incidents. Near the Velodrome crushed masonry was used as a road surface, but was later found to contain over 4 times the legal limit of asbestos and subsequently required controlled removal.

View of some of the mountains of material excavated for landscaping on the London Olympic Park

View of some of the mountains of material excavated for landscaping on the London Olympic Park

An ODA spokesperson said: “The ODA is on track to deliver the cleaning and clearing of the Olympic Park on time and well within the £364 million originally allocated in the ODA budget for Enabling Works. The London Development Agency has contributed additional funding to the site demolition and clean-up, which includes the remediation of contaminated soil. The ODA is currently anticipating delivering over £20 million of cost savings in its Enabling Works budget.”

Huge quantities of excavated material dominating the skyline on the London Olympic Park

Huge quanititis of excavated material dominating the skyline on the London Olympic Park

But the fact that the Olympic Park remains a potentially hazardous brownfield site not only brings into question the value for money of the remediation, it also has consequences for the legacy use of the land.  While the London Development Agency LDA hopes to recoup money by a post-Olympics sale of land, any use of the land will need careful monitoring. An ODA document warns that “Future use of the site should not include the construction of private gardens or the growing of edible crops”, in  contrast to the claims of green, sustainable legacy communities in their publicity.

The mysterious resignation of Jack Lemley (first Olympic boss) was attributed in part to his concerns over contamination of the Olympic Site, and the government’s failure to listen to bad news.   His concerns now appear well founded.

As the attempted remediation of Corby steelworks and the ongoing controversy of the asbestos contaminated Spodden Valley have shown, attempts to intensively redevelop sites regardless of their condition is risky unless very carefully managed. In the case of the Olympic Park there are the factors of an immovable timetable and ambitious landscaping involving the disturbance of millions of tons of soil containing a whole range of contaminants, and there is evidence these are taking priority over safety.

Messed up by the clean-up – on the previously stable and remediated West Ham tip, Manor Garden Allotments, Eastway Cycle Circuit and Clays Lane Estate.

Julian Cheyne, a resident who was evicted from his home to make way for the athletes’ village, comments:  “We lived at Clays Lane for twenty-five years. Nobody showed any concern for us or told us the site was dangerous.  Then the Olympics came along and we were told how the site had to be cleaned up for the athletes. It was described as ‘high risk of finding contaminants dangerous to human health’.  They dug up the site increasing the dangers by creating all that dust.  Now we find the site will still be dangerous! What a waste!”

Excavations and movement of excavated material from around the Olympic site may have made the pollution problem worse by bringing toxins closer to the surface.  For example the historic West Ham Tip had previously been covered with a substantial protective layer of over 2 meters of clean soil, now stripped away.

View of the Westham Tip before Olympic Earthworks.  It had been capped with 6 feet of clean material.

View of the Westham Tip before Olympic Earthworks. It had been capped with 6 feet of clean material.

Julie Sumner, evicted from her allotment to make way for an Olympic footpath, on the grounds that the land under her allotment had to be de-contaminated said  “I am incredulous that false premises were used to justify our eviction and the subsequent destruction of the plots. Our land had been correctly treated with a chalk cap around three metres down giving plenty of good clean topsoil, which gardeners safely cultivated for almost 100 years.  I find it hard to believe the turmoil of major construction work will not release many otherwise contained toxins mixing them into the soil, air and river.”

Though there was compelling evidence to suggest the site was radioactively contaminated before work started, the authorities appear not to have taken the problem seriously until contamination was found in material which had already been excavated and moved.  By that time the project was well advanced and the possibility of changing approach was probably impossible due to the Olympic deadline.

Today, as the clean-up draws to a close, documents show that more than 7,000 tonnes of radioactive waste has been wrapped in plastic and buried under a pedestrian walkway, while unknown quantities of radioactive and other contaminants have been left in the ground.

Because the site remains officially contaminated, and as it is now known to contain not only radioactive waste, but a variety of toxins, land in the Olympic Park may prove an unattractive liability to developers.  It is clearly far from demonstrating exemplary standards of remediation. Consequently Olympic landowners, who include the Lee Valley Park Authority and the LDA, could be liable for another costly and disruptive post-Olympic clean-up.



Story Image The Olympics site in east London. A plastic sheet, 31ins down, protects against buried toxins

Sunday February 14,2010

By Ted Jeory, Whitehall Editor

THE entire Olympics site in east London has been built on top of a thin plastic sheet laid at a depth of less than three feet to separate surface soil from potentially heavily contaminated ground below.

The Sunday Express has obtained documents which reveal London 2012 chiefs have covered up land that is possibly contaminated with asbestos and radioactive materials with a huge, bright orange sheet.

Spanning more than 600 acres —equivalent to some 400 football pitches–it is buried at a depth of 31ins to protect the health and safety of future builders and homeowners.

It is designed as a warning marker layer to anyone digging the foundations of new homes and offices that they must follow special precautions if there is a need to excavate more deeply.

While “clean” soil and debris have been placed above the sheet, anything below it has to be considered hazardous unless proved otherwise.

The revelations cast doubt on the Government’s central justification for staging the £9.3billion Games—that they would be handing over a huge urban park fit for human habitation and 10,000 new homes.

Even after the Games have finished, the site will still be classified as brownfield, with the onus on future developers to fund extra decontamination work, outside the giant Olympics budget.

The risks are likely to concern anyone considering living on the regenerated Olympic Park after 2012 and have major implications for recouping money from land sales.

Last night, John Whittingdale, chairman of the Commons Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, said: “If a future developer is required to bear extra costs for decontamination, that will reduce the value of the land and that’s something of concern.”

Games organisers set aside a budget of £364million to remediate what they claimed was one of Europe’s most heavily contaminated sites, which had been home for a century to landfill tips and heavy industrial use, including scrap cars and batteries and a mini test nuclear reactor.
The scale of the task, with a fixed deadline of 2012, was one of the major reasons for the resignation in 2006 of Jack Lemley, the former chief executive of the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA).

Shortly after quitting, he claimed Olympics Minister Tessa Jowell and her team had severely underestimated the problem, saying: “I said it would be enormously expensive because of the technical process of cleaning it up.

“When the London and Continental railway was put through there, as an example, they had to ship off-site several hundred thousand cubic metres of highly contaminated soil.

“At my final interview for the job, with John Prescott and Tessa Jowell, I said it was going to be one very complex programme to deliver, based on what I had seen on the site.

“It was terribly contaminated. There were old car bodies and hazardous chemicals leached into the ground.

“A blind man could see there was a huge environmental problem. I thought it was highly likely they underestimated.”

During its remediation operation, the ODA claims to have cleaned more than a million tonnes of contaminated soils and made safe millions of gallons of groundwater.

They were monitored throughout by the Environment Agency and other regulators, but they also concede the process was based on sampling soil at intervals, which means they can not guarantee all areas have been completely cleared.

Last year, the Sunday Express revealed that Games bosses had buried 7,300 tonnes of toxic and radioactive soil in a specially protected “disposal cell” close to the main Olympic Stadium.

The latest documents, which were obtained by freelance researchers Mike Wells and Paul Charman, show that even after the decontamination process, mistakes were made.

Crushed masonry recycled to form part of a road near the Velodrome was later found to contain asbestos at four times acceptable levels and had to be carefully removed, for example.

However, it is the existence of the orange plastic sheet, which highlights the potential future problems.

Professor Robert Kalin of Strathclyde University and considered Britain’s leading expert on land remediation said such marker layers were standard practice on sites known to be contaminated.

He said Olympics bosses would have been required to make the site fit only for the Games themselves and that would involve a “risk based approach for human health that can be open to interpretation”.

He added: “Should you change the designation of the land to say for housing, then you have to undergo a complete review.

“That might involve more site study, another risk assessment and if necessary further remediation.

“The difference with the Olympics site is that it’s on such a large scale, there’s nothing to compare the process to.”
However, the ODA insisted strongly last night that the site was safe.

A spokesman said: “The layer is a precautionary measure to guide the future developers of the land.

“Following intensive investigations contamination and ground water at all levels right across the site has been treated or removed.”



Should we beware the east wind?

Extensive radioactive contamination has been uncovered on the London 2012 Olympic site at Stratford. OPEN has made an appeal for funds to meet the cost of commissioning an independent nuclear scientist to report on the working methods and risks arising from the excavation works there. OPEN has been passed copies of consultants reports, and replies from the authorities to information requests made by members of Games Moniter, which raise serious concerns. OPEN considers that local residents should be fully informed of the works being undertaken on the Olympic site. 
If you can assist with funding the independent scientist’s report please contact

Historically the Olympic 2012 site housed east London’s “dirty industries” – insecticide & fertiliser works, paint and oil distillers, gas mantel works – many of which are known to have produced radioactive and other toxic by-products. London University’s decommissioned nuclear reactor was also on the site. Documentary evidence revealed that, prior to 1963 when regulation was first introduced by the Radioactive Substances Act 1960, there had been uncontrolled deposits of radioactive thoriumat a burial site under the West Ham tip. The likelihood was thatradium, and other toxic wastes, were also present. Local residents became concerned in 2007 when contractors began drilling on the Clays Lane housing estate, which had been built on the former tip, and measuring the drilling samples unearthed on the estate with geiger counters.

A contractor tests for radioactive contamination of soil unearthed during drilling on the Clays Lane housing estateThe authorities method of work was described at the time as “very crude” by a nuclear scientist but a local resident was refused legal aid to seek a Court injunction, to stop the excavations on the housing estate until he was rehoused. It was said that “the balance of convenience” was deemed to favour the authorities which would argue that “an injunction has the potential to stop in its tracks a project of national importance”. The drilling contractors withdrew from the estate at the time when their activities became public knowledge . Residents were later rehoused during the demolition of the estate.

Clouds of dust, and a skip with unsealed bags of asbestos material, during demolition of the Clays Lane estate
OPEN has recently been passed consultant’s reports, and replies to a series of Environmental Information Regulations (EIR) requests, which have confirmed that excavations have unearthed radiological contamination on the Olympic site which is far more widespread than the authorities had orginally anticipated. There have so far been finds in at least three of the construction zones quite apart from the thorium burial site which had initially been quarantined against excavation.
Questions have arisen as to the adequacy of the authorities’ controls to prevent the potential contamination of site workers. Despite clear advice regarding the likely pollutants in old landfill sites the authorities lack of preparedness left them trying to trace material, after it had been excavated and moved to a different site, when the source was discovered to be contaminated with radioactiviy.

There are concerns also regarding the risks to local residents from contamination by airborne dust, created by the excavation of over 2.5 million cubic metres of material across the Olympic site.

The system for landscape clearance of the site generally involved diggers excavating the ground and loading it into dumper and tipper trucks. The material would then be trucked to a “waste sorting” site before being sent for crushing and stockpiling for reuse. By November 2007 consultants had identified that some of the material brought to the waste sorter was contaminated with radioactive substances including radium226, radioactive phosphatic rocks and “hot spots” of radiochemically contaminated soils.

In their report consultants commented that, prior to the machine sorting and “hand picking” of the materials excavated, a “temporary ad hoc arrangment “ for gamma monitering had been provided. But “when radioactive material began to turn up in quantity at the waste sorter it was decided to instal equipment designed for the job“.
The authorities obtained initial approval from the Environment Agency (EA), after Radium+226 was discovered, to set aside and store radioactive materials for subsequent disposal, possibly to Cumbria or the nuclear site in Dorset. Additional approval became necessary when further sources of contamination were discovered. Although the EA certificate required the store to be marked with the word Radioactive it appears that the Health and Safety Executive have given permission for the sign to read “Heavily Contaminated Area” and not display the radioactive roundel.

A recognised pathway to contamination is by a person inhaling radioactive dust particles. Thorium is particularly hazardous. Dust suppression measures were theoretically in place, to meet the standard GLA construction site guidelines, but a random check in April 2008 identified that “wheelwashers on site are frequently not in operation.. making the problem more evident than necessary…improvements to sweepers and bowsers can be made…casual attitude towards speed limits on site, this leads to extra dust being generated…. no dust suppression on demolition and crushing [on one of the construction zones)...”.On the neigbouring Leabank Square housing estate residents have been complaining about dust from the Olympic site and said that they were literally eating airborne dust coating their bar-b-que food. The authorities were aware of the problem and began sending a dustweeping vehicle regularly to the estate. Nevertheless the Olympic Delivery Authority’s (ODA)  has threatened a Leabank Square resident with legal proceedingsunless accusations were removed from the Leabank Square blog that the authorities had failed to take measures to damp down dust on the construction site.

The Olympic site’s planning permission included a condition which was designed “to ensure protection of human health and to avoid pollution of controlled waters”. It required notification of unexpected contamination and for works to immediately cease until a method to deal with it was agreed. Nevertheless between 26rd June and 23rd September 2008 over 200 tonnes of material containing thorium and radium were excavated from 5 locations on the Olympic Stadium site and delivered by tipper lorries to another site. Notice of these discoveries was not given, and nor was approval sought for these works, until 10th November. Approval could therefore only be given retrospectively with the rider that there was “no opportunity to comment on the adequacy of the proposed measures prior to them being carried out“.

EIR replies from the ODA have revealed that over 7,000 tonnes of material (contaminated not only with Thorium+232 and Radium+226 but also with Uranium+238 and Protactinium-231) have been re-buried in a specially constructed cell beneath a road bridge near Stratford Town Centre. ODA consultants advised that“Protactinium-231…is the by-product of the chemical seperation of uranium from uranium ore. No evidence has been found of refined uranium.” The authorities say that all this material is either “exempt” or “low-level” and “naturally occurring” radioactive material. However given that some of this material came from former tips or landfill it is likely to have been dumped following industrial processes rather than occurring there naturally.
More recently the ODA has written to an independant journalist and researcher refusing to disclose a consultant’s report which advised the ODA of the radiological hazards encountered. The ODA claim the report is an exempt “internal communication” and that disclosure could “cause harm by misleading the public ” because the infomation it contains has been “superseded“.Should we beware the east wind? In Corby it is alleged that residents as far away as 4 km were exposed to airborne contamination. Have similar risks arisen from the Olympic site? The evidence uncovered of the authorities working methods to date, and the lack of adequate independent oversight of its activities, do not currently inspire complete confidence. Given the clear public interest that this matter raises and the international scrutiny that London will be exposed to in 2012, OPEN is calling for donations towards the cost of a report by an independent nuclear scientist. It is expected that the ODA will want to cooperate fully with the investigation in the interests of transparency and public confidence.
If you can assist with funding the independent scientist’s report please contact

All photos in this article are by Mike Wells


Olympic Park Radioactive Waste Scare as Regulations Breached

Mike J Wells, July 2009

.: Olympic contractor tests a soil sample for radiation with a Geiger counter. Photo © Mike Wells

Olympic contractor tests a soil sample for radiation with a Geiger counter. Photo by Mike Wells

A document obtained from an undisclosed source reveals that hazardous radioactive waste was excavated and moved within the London Olympic Park before official permission was granted.

In this document Vivienne Ramsey, head of planning for the Olympic project, warns the Olympic Delivery Authority …

“You are reminded that Remediation Change Notes [legal documents allowing work to continue] are intended to be issued and agreed prior to works being undertaken. The submitted Note is retrospective and therefore gives the Local Planning Authority no opportunity to comment on the adequacy of the proposed measures prior to them being carried out.”

The fact that work to excavate, handle, transport, and store this material was carried out before permission was granted is a serious breach of regulations, and places doubt on the safety of workers and local residents. The situation may also influence the legacy value of land and housing.

Though the authorities have known for some time that radioactive waste was buried in the Olympic Park it is not until now that the scale of the problem has emerged. Documents reveal that more than 7,000 tonnes of waste has been found on site to date, much of it unexpected. Some 7,300 tonnes has been placed in a radioactive storage bunker built into the approach to a bridge in the Olympic Park – within 250m of Stratford International station and around 400 metres from the Olympic Stadium. Olympic Delivery Authority contractors claim that the waste in the storage cell will be safe for at least 1,000 years. The waste, a legacy of the site’s industrial history, is something Olympic bosses have been trying to play down, stressing that it is “Low Level” and “naturally occurring” radioactive material.

However, Doctor Chris Busby, an expert on radiation and health, comments that radioactive material can be classified as Low Level or Naturally Occurring but still be extremely hazardous.

Dr Busby also notes that data on radioactive material in the Olympic Park shows a radiation signature which…

“suggests that the contamination is from significant levels of uranium. This should be considered to be a serious alpha and photoelectron emitter inhalation hazard.”

Much of the buried radioactive waste has been found on the site of the main stadium itself and includes radium, polonium, and thorium as well as uranium. The race to meet the Olympic deadline may have resulted in inadequate surveying, as the radioactive hazard was only detected after contaminated material had been unwittingly excavated.

Agencies with workers on site include the Environment Agency and the Police; neither of these agencies have any information on the risk assessment for any potential radiological uptake of their staff on the Olympic site.

One of the pathways for radiological uptake is from dust. Another document shows concerns over inadequate dust suppression on site. Residents living near the Olympic construction site have been complaining of dust from the site since works began in 2007, yet attempts to improve poor dust management measures have only been implemented relatively recently.

Doctor Busby comments that …

“if there is documentary evidence of the disposal of Thorium waste at the site, then this has to be taken seriously as Thorium dust represents a serious radiological inhalation hazard. “

Another request for data on radiation monitoring was refused by the Olympic Delivery Authority who say the cost of collating the data is too high, they claim …

“the public interest in maintaining the exemption [to withhold the information] outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.”

In another departure from normal practice, areas of the Olympic construction site that are contaminated with radioactive material are not marked with the familiar “radioactive roundel” but rather have been marked “Heavily Contaminated Area”.


Contamination and Controversy in the Olympic Park

By Mike Wells


For more than a century what will be the Olympic Park was home to some of the nation’s dirtiest industries. Within, and surrounding, what will be the Olympic Park some 7,500 people were employed in the chemicals industry. A new document reveals a second case of radioactive waste dumped in 1953 in a former landfill site within the Park. An Environment Agency analysis shows higher than normal levels of radioactive material in the River Lee. The article examines the historical information available, includes quotes from experts and lawyers, and is critical of the LDA’s work in the Park, which local residents fear puts them at risk. …

We are told the Olympic Park will be the largest construction site in Europe, and with the Olympic Clock ticking relentlessly towards 2012, late delivery of the Olympic project is not an option. On-time delivery is however complicated by many practical and human dimensions, some of which have the capacity to seriously tarnish the brand identity of the Olympics.

The Olympic Park and its surrounding area has, for more than a century, been the home to what one local history book refers to as “obnoxious industries”. At one time the area employed some 7,500 people in the manufacture chemicals. Those chemicals included everything from arsenic to pesticides. This was a different and unregulated era when there were few if any regulations covering the production and dumping of substances, and frequently little knowledge of how dangerous some of these substances were. Agri-chemicals like Agent Orange and DDT, were celebrated and seen as a great leap forward. Other dirty industries included at least two companies working with radioactive materials, as well as a small experimental nuclear reactor run by Queen Mary’s College. Not only is the land some of these factories occupied likely to be contaminated, so are the places their waste was dumped.

Also inside what will be the Olympic Park is an old landfill site, the former Westham Tip. The tip was just a mile or so away from Hemingway & Co and a few miles from Thorium Ltd both of which worked with the radioactive metal, thorium. The factory occupied by Thorium Ltd was demolished some time ago, and 10,000 tonnes of contaminated material from the factory had to be dumped at sea. A report by John Large titled Lost Radioactive Waste of the UK comments that record keeping at Hemingway & Co was inadequate. Not only is it possible that the waste from these companies ended up in the Westham Tip it is also possible that Hemingway’s factory site on Marshgate Lane will be contaminated. John Large who, in a varied career, has also worked with the Argonaut series of experimental reactors of the type used by Queen Mary’s comments that the operation of this type of reactor produced a significant amount of waste. He also suggests that in those unregulated days those that did know how waste should be dealt with were often not responsible for its disposal, and those that were in charge of disposal frequently did not have the knowledge required to deal with the waste satisfactorily. The Radioactive Substances Act 1960, which regulated the dumping of waste did not come into force until 1963. John Large maintains that during the 3 year window before the Act came into force there was an accelerated history of unlicensed and unrecorded dumping. He argues that when the word got round of a place willing to take radioactive waste many organisations took the opportunity to offload material.

Today on the site of the former Westham Tip stands the Clays Lane Housing Estate. A few months ago, under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, residents of Clays Lane obtained a document showing that in 1959 radioactive waste was buried in the Westham Tip. They recently obtained a second document under the FOI Act showing that radioactive waste was also buried there in 1953. Also under the FOI Act Clays Lane residents obtained results of a survey carried out by the Environment Agency showing higher than normal levels of thorium in the River Lee, which runs along side the former landfill site. They claim that the London Development Agency (LDA) may have already put their health at risk by bringing dangerous material to the surface when they drilled test bore holes around the estate. They also claim that the LDA’s work on ground (also landfill) adjacent to the estate may pose a risk to health.

Chris Busby who has been acting as an expert witness for Clays Lane comments that …

“if there is documentary evidence of the disposal of Thorium waste at the site, then this has to be taken seriously as Thorium dust represents a serious radiological inhalation hazard. I note that the quantities of Thorium involved do not seem to be known … any attempt to look for the material by drilling random holes and examining material with a Geiger counter will not result in evidence that the material is not there … it would, in my opinion, be unsafe to disturb the soil: the result could involve dispersion of dust which represents a significant hazard to local inhabitants or workers.”

John Large comments that there is likely to be a risk from other non-radioactive contaminants in the former landfill. That assumption seems reasonable as according to a Local History Book, West Ham 1896 to 1986, published by the London Borough of Newham an alarming range of toxic chemicals were manufactured in the area.

Local industrial historian Chris Seagrave who, in 1958, was just starting his career as a chemical engineer at an oil distilling company, Smith Bros & Co, at 24 Marshgate Lane reminisces that on one side of Smith Bros was Hemingway & Co and that as well as thorium they also produced arsenic. On other side of Smith Bros at 22 Marshgate Lane was a company storing or working with thorium. He tells me that workers at Smith Bros used to joke that if the Arsenic didn’t get you then the Thorium would. Marshgate Lane is inside the Olympic Park and seems to have an industrial history typical of the area.

After 1964, there may have been controls over the dumping of radioactive material, but before to 1974 there were no regulations controlling the dumping of anything non-radioactive, but still potentially lethal. The former West Ham Tip is just the wrong vintage; it was active from before World War 2 until around 1973. As John Large comments it is therefore likely to contain not only the radioactive material already known about, but also many other dangerous substances.

Huge tunnels are currently being constructed under the Olympic Park to take cables that at present hang from pylons and dominate the skyline of the area. Despite the fact that they are 25 metres underground contamination was recently found in the tunnels, the work had to be stopped and workers taken to hospital. A year or so ago I spoke to workers on these tunnels. They were digging through the former Westham Tip, one of the sites designated by the LDA themselves as high risk to human health. The workers I spoke to told me they had not received any training or information that they were digging through potentially contaminated ground.

Another issue is the area’s WW 2 history.
Evidence of the Luftwaffe handiwork is shown on a wartime map of the area, which is literally pockmarked with bombsites represented by small dots. Marshgate Lane alone suffered approximately 6 direct hits. One of those was to Hemingway & Co. It is thought that there are at least two sites within the Olympic Park where material from war-damaged factories was dumped, one of those sites is believed to be the West Ham Tip. The bomb map gives some indication of how much contaminated material must have been dumped. The other WW2 problem is unexploded ordinance, as an internal memo from the Newham notes … “there is the possibility that not all unexploded ordinance has been recorded, especially in the remoter undeveloped parts of the Borough”. Though close to all the industrial activity, the area around Clays Lane remains until today the most undeveloped part of the borough. There is also confusion over the accuracy of these records as the same memo notes … “it is not clear if these reports were continually updated” and the memo goes on to note that … “these records do not tie in with the Health and Safety Executive records”. However an unexploded bomb is recorded as having landed within 50 or so metres Clays Lane, who knows if it is still there?

The decision to carry out invasive works in and around the Clays Lane Estate with residents still living there seems surprising especially when the LDA have themselves designated the area around Clays Lane as potentially hazardous to human health (SEE MAP). On visiting one of the houses at Clays Lane whilst drilling was underway, one could feel the whole building shaking, and it was impossible not wonder what would happen if the drill bit struck an unexploded bomb. The LDA’s contractors used a Geiger counter during the drilling process but according to witness statements their working practices appeared haphazard, and water they had pumped down holes was spilling out over the ground and was left there.

Large scale earth works are required to landscape the Olympic park. Information on the LDA’s website states that it is estimated that there is 175,000 tonnes of hazardous waste that cannot be treated for use on site. This will need to be taken off site for further treatment and or disposal. However the latest planning documents released by the LDA say that approximately 650,000 tonnes of material will have to be taken off site. These figures look very much like to whole Olympic budget in general – increasing. The plan is to remediate as much contamination on site as possible, but whether taken off site, or remediated on site, as Chris Busby says, the problem is that when the ground is disturbed any risk to health is likely to be increased due to the inhalation of dust.

Because of concerns over potential risks to health one resident of Clays Lane has been trying to obtain a court injunction to halt work on the Olympic site near the estate. However the legal action stalled when a strong case for Legal Aid was refused. Bill Parry-Davies, the resident’s solicitor, said “the refusal of legal aid here seems to conflict with the established guidelines for dealing with cases where there is a wider public benefit, namely where other local residents would also benefit from the protection of an injunction to prevent the risk of contamination until they are rehoused elsewhere”. He goes on to note that the Legal Aid Appeal Committee described the case as “thoroughly prepared and forcefully put” and comments the subsequent rejection of the application was “surprising”.

Amongst residents of Clays Lane there has already been speculation over what influence the Olympic project might have over government bodies like the Legal Services Commission? The surprising decision by the Legal Aid Commission in relation to the safety of local residents may be one small indicator of the way things are to be handled in the wake of the Olympic project? As Julian Chayne a Clays Lane resident puts it … “it is astonishing the LDA is prepared to start invasive works on such a tip created at a time when controls were much less stringent, while residents are living next door. They should be operating a precautionary principal and showing proper care for residents.” However at the time of writing work next to Clays Lane continues, trees on the site have been cut down, and surface vegetation stripped away in leaving the uncapped landfill material exposed, and excavations are being carried out all over the site.

The political and financial pressures to deliver on time, makes it plausible that the LDA and politicians may see this as a kind of emergency situation, and that leads to the question of whether standards are to be kept, or corners are to be cut? It is notable that the document referring to waste buried on the site in 1953 was only obtained after an FOI request to the Environment Agency and that this document was not forthcoming from previous FOI requests to Newham Council or the LDA. An article in New Civil Engineer comments that … “contractors have been banned from talking to the press [about contamination] by their client the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA).” Workers on the site who are currently taking samples from the land but they never know the results as they bagged up and sent off site to laboratories for testing. For the LDA and ODA this is a tricky situation. The issue of contamination has the capacity to seriously damage not only the Olympic brand, but could also cause labour problems and reduce the value of land post-Olympics.


[Original source: 0,,4662-1693416,00.html]

London 2012 Olympic Park to be built on nuclear site

By David Charter and John Goodbody July 14, 2005 UK Times

LONDON’S proposed Olympic Park in 2012 had been the site of an experimental nuclear reactor, it was revealed yesterday. London 2012 officials insisted, though, that the area was free from nuclear contamination and senior bid figures told The Times that it came as a surprise to learn that Queen Mary College’s department of nuclear engineering built a reactor at the Lower Lea Valley in 1980.

The college issued a statement declaring that the reactor was closed down in 1982, under supervision by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate, and that there were “absolutely no ongoing health implications of the decommissioned reactor”.

London 2012 said that it had not disclosed the existence of the reactor to the International Olympic Committee (IOC) because it had not known about it until yesterday and its own environmental advisers had not raised “any nuclear contamination issues”. But the Conservative member of the London Assembly who made details of the reactor public called for a fresh survey of the site. Bob Blackman, the Tory economic development spokesman, said: “If there was an experimental nuclear reactor there . . . they may well have closed it down properly and removed the contamination. But have they surveyed it recently?”

Mike Lee, the bid spokesman, said that environmental advisers had assured the London Development Agency that there was “no nuclear contamination issue”. Lee flatly denied Blackman’s claims that he had confirmed there was a nuclear contamination issue with the site. “We were not aware of this issue when we submitted the candidate file to the IOC,” Lee said. “The only time that the bid became aware was when the matter was raised in the London Assembly today.”

The candidate file, which was submitted to the IOC on November 15, 2004, was examined by the IOC’s evaluation commission, which visited London in February. No mention of the fact that there had been a nuclear reactor on the site of the Olympic Park appears in its official report, which was published on June 6 and read by IOC members before they voted in Singapore on July 6.

London 2012 insiders were furious at the way Blackman raised the issue, dismissing the disclosure as “a storm in a teacup”. Lee has accused Blackman of “scaremongering”.

During the meeting, Blackman asked: “This site was also the site of a nuclear reactor at one stage. Can you assure us that all of that contamination has been removed?” Lee responded: “My understanding is that all the remediation work that is needed, the decontamination that is needed, is being planned and is under way. Everybody who has been engaged in this — and there has been a lot of assessment of the area and the land — knows that it will be fully decontaminated and safe before the building work starts.”

Asked last night to explain why he had apparently known about the issue, despite having said that the bid team became aware of it only yesterday, Lee said: “My comments were of a very general nature, dealing with contamination. They were not to do with any issue about a nuclear reactor.”

In its statement, Queen Mary College said that the now-defunct Department of Nuclear Engineering used to house a small nuclear reactor at Marshgate Lane. It added: “It was used for undergraduate experiments and postgraduate projects, and for training people to work in or on nuclear power stations.

“It was decommissioned in 1982 under supervision by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate. The reactor was exceptionally small; the core was the size of a bucket and produced virtually no energy. Decommissioning staff were able to stand inside the reactor void with no protective clothing.”

Later, a spokesman for the college said that the core was dismantled and removed but that the concrete shield was found to have some minor contamination. Those radioactive parts were chipped away and sent to a nuclear processing plant. “As far as the college is aware, none of the material from the reactor is buried on the site,” the spokesman added.

Professor Ian Fells, of the University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, agreed that there was no risk. “I should be very surprised if there is any substantial contamination from the reactor at all,” he said. “Those reactors were feeble in

power — that was the reason they were allowed to have one on a university campus in the first place.”

A spokesman for the London Development Agency said: “This seems to be completely spurious. There is no issue here because it was fully decontaminated 23 years ago. It is not relevant what was there years ago if there are no health implications now. There was a full process of checking everything in the area.” No one from the IOC was available to comment.


Last Updated: Thursday, 14 July 2005, 12:15 GMT 13:15 UK 

Olympic Park on ex-nuclear site
Olympic Park

London 2012 officials have insisted there is no health risk after learning part of the planned Olympic Park is on the site of a former nuclear reactor.

Conservative politicians have called for a fresh survey at the site in East London’s Lower Lea Valley.

But a London 2012 spokesman said the London Development Agency had already carried out a full environmental impact assessment.

“It showed no evidence of any nuclear contamination,” said the spokesman.

Details of the reactor were revealed by a Conservative member of the London Assembly at an assembly meeting on Wednesday where 2012 team spokesman Mike Lee was questioned about the Olympics.

Bob Blackman, the Tory economic development spokesman, said: “During this process, officers at the bid team have been very blase about the problems of contamination in the Lower Lea Valley, but they must take this matter seriously.

Location: Main college campus, Mile End, then moved to Marshgate Lane. Decommissioned 1982
Reactor: Was used for undergraduate experiments and postgraduate projects
Training: One of three centres which trained people for work at nuclear power stations. Others were Navy bases at Greenwich and near Ascot

“We have got a huge amount of building to do and this work cannot even start until we clean the site up.”

It is understood bid officials did not know about the reactor until Mr Blackman raised the issue.

But they are satisfied the area was fully decontaminated 23 years ago when the reactor was decommissioned.

The reactor was used by Queen Mary College’s department of nuclear engineering, which is now defunct, until 1982.

In a statement, the college said: “The reactor was exceptionally small; the core was the size of a bucket and produced virtually no energy.

“Decommissioning staff were able to stand inside the reactor void with no protective clothing.”

 There are absolutely no ongoing health implications of the decommissioned reactor
College statement

London beat four cities to win the right to host the Games, and its bid won cross-party support.

Tories say they did not raise the nuclear reactor issue earlier in case it damaged the capital’s bid.

And Mr Blackman believes a fresh survey of the site will help to resolve the matter.

But London 2012 insiders feel he is being “mischievous”, and officials have already pledged to carry out any clean-up work – where it is needed – on former industrial sites.

Although many sports fans and Londoners welcome the Games being held in London, there has been opposition.

Businesses at Marshgate Lane in Newham, where the new Olympic Stadium will be built, have been unhappy with relocation plans.