Olympic sailor calls Rio's sailing venue in Guanabara Bay 'most polluted place I've ever been' - InfoNews

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Olympic sailor calls Rio's sailing venue in Guanabara Bay 'most polluted place I've ever been'

Brazilian sailor Martine Soffiatti Grael, prepares her boat for an international sailing competition at Rio de Janeiro's Yacht Club, on the waters of Guanabara Bay in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013. Olympic sailors gathered at Guanabara Bay to compete in an event on Saturday, but primarily they came to check out the venue for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro. (AP Photo/Lianne Milton)
December 07, 2013 - 12:40 PM

RIO DE JANEIRO - Olympic sailors gathered at Guanabara Bay to compete in a local event on Saturday, but primarily they came to check out the venue for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Many didn't like what they saw.

Danish Olympian Allan Norregaard, a bronze medallist in the 2012 London Games, calls Guanabara "the most polluted place I've ever been."

Rio's local Olympic organizing committee has promised the pollution will be cleaned up when the Olympics open in 2 1/2 years, and government officials have pledged to reduce 80 per cent of the pollution flowing into the bay.

But sailors say they're doubtful the problem can be fixed after festering for decades, and many worry about their health.

Environmentalists call measures being taken "stopgap," likely to mask the problem and not cure it.

News from © The Associated Press, 2013
The Associated Press

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