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Climate Change Takes Center Stage in the Rio Olympics

Aug 09, 2016 06:45 AM EDT
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The anticipated Rio Olympic games 2016 was tainted with the environmental issue in Brazil and has sparked a worldwide interest on climate change.

During the opening ceremony at the Olympics, a part was dedicated to climate change where it the dangers of sea level rise was visually discussed. It was deemed fitting after the Paris convention set a limit to global warming to 1.5C.

But experts say people don't need to look far from home to understand the causes of climate change, as Brazil is also being criticized for the waste, sewage and pollution problems in the area.

A few weeks before the opening of the Rio Olympics, the Internet witnessed the foul condition of the water in Rio. The water is connected to the actual sports venue such as sailing. Some reports say athletes will have to avoid wastes floating in the water and that they will have to keep their mouths closed during the event.

But one good thing about the Olympics giving the limelight to climate change is that it sparked the interests of people worldwide to look into the issue on climate change; it is now called the "Rio Olympic Effect" and just like the Oscar speech paved the way to the DiCaprio Effect", according to a report. With the recent climate change conventions and the help of other personalities such as the Oscar-winning Leonardo DiCaprio, more and more people slowly understand the perils of climate change that scientists have been campaigning for, for years.

These are proof that when climate change is injected to worldwide events such as the Rio Olympics, and when celebrities talk about it, people tend to look and listen. Some compare the Rio Olympic climate change segment to DiCaprio's Oscars speech that proved to be effective in generating discussions about the matter. "A single speech, at a very opportunistic time, at the Oscar ceremony, resulted in the largest increase in public engagement with climate change ever," John Ayers of San Diego State University, said in an interview with Washington Post.

Hopefully, the Rio effect will also garner as much, or even more discussions and efforts to fight sea level rise, global warming and the root causes of climate change.

 

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