Wednesday 24 January 2018

Destruction and pollution - it's the Olympic Games

The Olympic dream is so special that sports fans are happy to ignore the problems that have accompanied most of the modern day Games.

Environmental destruction, profligate spending and pollution controversies are conveniently overlooked in the jamboree that biological passports later confirm as festivals of cheating.

In 2004, Greece plunged itself billions into hock, building now derelict stadia and an overambitious infrastructure. The 2008 Games followed mass forced evictions and the destruction of entire neighbourhoods in Beijing, a city that challenges Mexico City as the sulphur dioxide capital of the world.

In 2013, we read the first reports of industrial waste and the untreated sewage of seven million Brazilians being dumped in Guanabara Bay in Rio where the Olympic sailing events are to be held.

This week there are reports of massive fish die-offs stinking out areas around Rodrigo de Freitas lake where Olympic rowing and canoeing events will be held. The only ones benefiting are the local vultures.

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