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04/08/23 | 1:12 pm

Climate Change creating havoc for sports events 

Do you know, the winter games scheduled to be held in Auli, Italy in February 2023, have been cancelled due to less snowfall in the region? Italy is already facing snow crisis three years before the Milan Cortina 2026 Winter Olympics. On the other hand, it is nothing new in the world of tennis to see a player collapse in the middle of the match due to excessive heat. It burns at the Australian Open and reports of players fainting comes one after the other. In another recent news, as per media reports, a college football player in Kansas died after sustaining “heat-related injuries” at practice. Other sports face similar fate. Marathon runners now need to work extra on keeping their endurance, and more. 

All these instances point toward one pertinent issue- climate change. Its impact has now touched the field of sports also – a field heavily dependent on the environment of the place, becoming a worry for the professionals. 
 
Climate change is a no hidden phenomenon as the world suffers from it and millions get impacted. Now, when one thinks about it, one understands how each and every component in his sphere is interrelated and co-dependent. Let's break it down. 

The rising temperature is one of the biggest worries that loom on the planet earth. It has resulted in the melting of large caps of glaciers, leading to a rise in sea water level, increased heatwaves, unaccounted floods and more. As a result, the sports organisers are forced to consider the schedules, and places and the need to come up with alternative solutions for the continuity of the sport. 

The 2026 Winter Olympics is scheduled to be held in Milan and Cortina d'Ampezzo. However, as the dates approach, Italy's ski industry is reliant on artificial snow. This has also had an impact on the price of artificial snow, electricity costs, and shuting down of resorts. Earlier, concern over warmer temperatures and vanishing snow in some of the world’s winter playgrounds had put the selection of a host city for the 2030 Winter Olympics on hold.

While some are resorting to alternative solutions, some are forced to postpone or even cancel the sporting event, like the Auli Winter Games 2023. 

Europe is experiencing some of the hottest temperatures of summer in 2023, with several getting affected by the heatwave. Meanwhile, June 2023 was the hottest June on record according to NASA’s global temperature analysis. On the contrary, countries like India, and China are battling heavy rain.  

The UN Secretary General has said that “climate change is out of control”. As time passes by, its impact is being felt on every aspect of life, both biotic and abiotic – sports being one of them. However, it remains to see, how the issue is dealt with in coming times.

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