Pollution a Concern For Olympic Athletes
July 14, 2008
For this year’s summer olympics, everyone involved from doctors to the athletes themselves have voiced their concern about Beijing’s air quality, especially for more intense and breath-demanding outdoor sports like sprinting and long distance running. Doctors are even predicting that the air quality, along with Beijing’s summer heat and high humidity, will require more hydration and breaks for the athletes if they want to stay conscious and come home to the US without any health problems. The air, which Time dubbed “the worst in the world” will force US athletes to wear protective masks even when they are walking around town.
The internet is abuzz with criticism toward the pollution. One person I noticed over the web had a rather interesting observation, reminiscent of Sharon Stone’s controversial comment which got her banned from China all together. They claimed that it was “karma” that China is stuck with horrible humidity and pollution after all the “mistakes” they made. Figures.
But there is hope! Time.com published an article titled “Beijing’s Olympic War On Smog,” which cleared up any uncertainty to me, stating Beijing cut their total emissions by 30%. One former steel worker claimed that after the factory he worked at was shut down, the air is “so, so much better.” Well, at least they have a start.