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Olympics: Pollution muddies Rio 2016 waters

Published on Mar 22, 2014 7:43 AM
 
Old ships are seen at Guanabara Bay in Rio de Janeiro March 12. Waters polluted by sewage off the coast of Rio remain a concern for organisers of the 2016 Olympics, but the International Olympic Committee insisted on Friday that the sea will be safe for competition. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

RIO DE JANEIRO (AFP) - Waters polluted by sewage off the coast of Rio remain a concern for organisers of the 2016 Olympics, but the International Olympic Committee insisted on Friday that the sea will be safe for competition.

Guanabara Bay, which will host the sailing at the Games, has caused consternation amongst some athletes with the water quality condemned as "disgusting" by one sailor.

IOC coordination commission chair Nawal el Moutawakel noted on a sixth visit on Friday that the authorities have pledged to deliver a huge increase in sewage treatment by 2015.

"There will be a seven-fold increase in treated sewage around the Guanabara Bay by 2015," she said, with sailing test events slated for August serving as an environmental catalyst for the city authorities.

 
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