Rio Olympic water pollution

Elizabeth Quinlan and Lizzie Quinlan

Recent news has shown that the open water where the future 2016 Olympians are supposed to compete in next summer in Rio De Janeiro in both open water swimming and boating events has some extreme health risks. Tests have shown that the quality of the water is low, and that it contains dangerously high levels of viruses and bacteria from human sewage that have been released into it. Sewage levels have even been high along the shorelines, and even high far off from the shore where many of the athletes will be competing in rowing, canoeing, sailing, and open swimming. Of the newer rounds of testings that the Associated Press has done on the waterways, they have shown that the waterways are just as high offshore as they are near land, where there is raw sewage that is flowed into the waterways from other foul smelling rivers and drains from storms.

Reported in July by the Associated Press after the first testings done on the water, the tests showed viruses that could cause diseases, which were directly linked to human sewage, and that the levels of sewage were 1.7 million times larger to what would be considered alarming in both the United States and Europe. The second testings done showed that there was no improvement in the water quality and that it was even more contaminated than it was before.

Since Rio is still a developing nation, and while many other developing ones are in the same position, the waterways are extremely contaminated because most of the city’s sewage is not treated as it is in the United States. While the waterways are extremely contaminated, Rio’s authorities stated that they are trying to fix the sewage problems and clear up the waterways.

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