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Low Budget, Big Impact: Rio Olympics 2016 Opening Ceremony Calls for Environmental Action on Climate Change

Aug 06, 2016 06:00 AM EDT
Opening Ceremony Rio 2016 Olympic Games
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 05: The Olympic Rings are formed in green foliage during the Opening Ceremony of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at Maracana Stadium on August 5, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
(Photo : Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Rio de Janeiro opened the much-awaited Rio Olympics 2016 with a deeper message regarding the planet. Apart from the joyful celebration in Maracana Stadium, the Rio Olympics opening ceremony on Friday shed light on Brazil's biodiversity as well as call-to-actions regarding climate change.

According to the official website of Rio 2016, creative director Fernando Meirelles ("City of God") designed the opening ceremony to urge audiences at the event, and even at their houses, to take action.

One of the features in the ceremony are NASA-inspired heat maps which projected the alarming rise of sea level in cities like Amsterdam, Shanghai, Dubai and Rio de Janeiro. "The heat is melting the ice cap. It's disappearing very quickly," said a voiceover while a peace sign in the form of a tree projected on the floor of the Maracana Stadium., Fox News reports.

The Amazon was also put on the spotlight when yellow butterflies were flown in the stadium, which made the crowd roar.

Also following the environmental theme of the ceremony is, of course, the Olympics logo. The iconic Olympic rings turned lush green while thousands of athletes, each holding a seeding, pledged that each of the seeding will be transplanted.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon called a two-week truce from warring parties, asking them to "lay down their weapons" to "celebrate the best of humanity," as per FOX News.

Meanwhile, with regards to the budget of the ceremony, director Meirelles said that costs were kept at a minimum due to Brazil's recession.

"It is pretty tacky to be overspending," he said, adding that their budget was 12 times less than the London Olympics and 20 times less than in Beijing.

"It is not a good message for the world. When 40 percent of the homes in Brazil have no sanitation, you can't really be spending a billion reals for a show, "Meirelles said.

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