IOC Cites Climate Change For A Delay In Awarding The 2030 Winter Olympics

Salt Lake City and Sapporo, Japan are the bidders.

Neither Salt Lake City nor Sapporo, Japan will be awarded the 2030 Winter Olympics during 2023 as promised because the International Olympic Committee is waiting for weather forecasts in 2030. The IOC is studying the impact of climate change and whether that is going to limit the number of areas that could host a Winter Olympics. But is that the real reason the IOC is delaying the naming of the host of the 2030 Winter Olympics or is it something else? Like the United States Olympic Committee not wanting to host back-to-back Olympics in 2028 and 2030 because there are just so many times you can ask marketing partners for money? Or is it a scandal in Japan after police this summer arrested Haruyuki Takahashi, a Tokyo Olympics executive, on the suspicion of taking bribes in return for helping companies become official sponsors for the 2021 Tokyo Olympics event? Fifteen people have been indicted in an ongoing investigation. Sapporo officials do not want to ask local residents if they want an Olympics event because they probably know the answer and won’t like what the people want. The answer of should we have a Sapporo 2030 Winter Olympics would be no.

The problem for the International Olympic Committee is rather simple. Yes, people are interested in the event but as long as it is not in my backyard. The IOC has seen numerous cities and countries drop out of the bidding because the event is too expensive and municipalities are left with Olympic size debt for decades. The event does not pay for itself. Vancouver, British Columbia was also in the running for the 2030 event but local politicians said there are better ways to spend public money than the Olympics. Blaming climate change obscures the real problem of finding people who want to pay for an Olympics event.

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