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No AC in Paris Olympics Village: Athletes Face Heatwave with Fans Only

Daniel Kim Views  

Pasco

With the Paris Olympics scheduled for next month, it has been decided that no air conditioning units will be installed in the Olympic Village. In response, each country is individually preparing alternatives.

The Paris Olympic Organizing Committee stated that the decision was made for an eco-friendly Olympics. Still, with a record-breaking heatwave expected this summer, some countries have decided to install air conditioning on their own.

This has raised concerns that a cooling gap may arise depending on each country’s financial situation.

The Organizing Committee explained that the Olympic Village buildings are designed to be kept 6 degrees Celsius (11 degrees Fahrenheit) cooler than the outside by avoiding direct sunlight and utilizing underground cooling water.

However, last year’s summer temperature in France soared to 43 degrees Celcius (109.4 degrees Fahrenheit). Even with a 6-degree drop, it still reaches 37 degrees Celcius (98.6 degrees Fahrenheit).

In fact, during the last Tokyo Olympics, one in every 100 athletes suffered from heat-related illnesses.

In response, countries with larger budgets have decided to provide portable air conditioners for their athletes.

According to The Washington Post (WP), upon inquiry, eight participating countries, including the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, Italy, and Greece, revealed plans to provide portable air conditioners to their athletes.

As president of the Greek Olympic Committee for Environmental Sustainability, Alexandra Palli said, “We will bring them [air conditioners]. And we will take them back to Greece,” adding, “They need support. Because what they do is very difficult anyway.”

Anna Meares, the head of the Australian Olympic team, also conveyed that they are considering providing portable air conditioners to athletes who want to use them during hot weather.

The Washington Post highlighted that China, which sends the most athletes, remains unpredictable. It was also mentioned that despite not responding to inquiries, the use of air conditioners domestically in China is rising remarkably fast, suggesting that China is likely to extend its air conditioning support.

Countries with less financial capacity have expressed difficulties. Donald Rukare, Chairperson of the National Council of Sports of Uganda, said, “We don’t have the funds to support cooling devices,” and revealed, “A few years ago, our athletes had to stay in rooms without air conditioning because we couldn’t provide funding for a sports event in Turkey.”

In response, Georgina Grenon, Director of Environmental Excellence for the Paris Olympics Organizing Committee, said, “The athlete’s village is intended to be used as a residential facility for 6,000 people after the Olympics,” and added, “In a world where we need to reduce our carbon footprint, there is no need to maintain an indoor temperature of 18 degrees to get through the summer.”

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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