The report, released on Wednesday by the British Association for Sustainable Sport, details the concerns of leading athletes and scientists about the health effects of soaring temperatures in Japan.
According to the report, the average annual temperature in Tokyo “has increased by 2.86 degrees Celsius since 1900, more than three times faster than the world average.”
The Olympics are scheduled to run from July 23 to August 8 – a time when Japan typically experiences its highest annual temperatures, which soar even more in the warming climate.
“I think we’re definitely approaching a danger zone,” British rower and Olympic hopeful Melissa Wilson told the study’s authors. “It’s a horrible moment when you see athletes crossing the line, their bodies retreating in total exhaustion, then not getting up.”
The study details how events such as triathlon, marathon, tennis and rowing could be affected by hot conditions.
It also provides advice to athletes on how to cope with competition in the heat, as well as warnings on how the climate crisis could derail sporting events in the future.
“Olympic organizers must take the warnings in this report seriously or face a real risk of competitors collapsing from heat exhaustion,” said Mike Tipton, professor of human and applied physiology at the Environments Laboratory. extremes of the School of Sport, Health and Exercise Sciences. British University of Portsmouth.
“In a sporting context, a hot and / or humid environment can represent a risk for the performances and the health of spectators, officials and athletes. heat or with heat stroke collapse, all facets of a sport the event – and everyone involved – can be negatively affected. ”
The International Olympic Committee did not immediately respond to CNN’s request for comment on the report.
This includes preparing sites to keep people as cool and hydrated as possible, providing weather forecasts, and providing information on how to mitigate the risk of heat and treat the resulting symptoms.
“While the average high temperature in Tokyo during the Olympics (late July to early August) is 30 to 31 C (86 to 88 F), they often experience high temperatures in the mid-30s (mid-90s). F) and in recent years have even approached 40 C (104 F), ”CNN meteorologist Taylor Ward said.
“The combination of this heat and very high humidity has led to several deadly summer heat waves across Japan in recent years. These conditions will undoubtedly put extreme pressure on the athletes at the outdoor venues during the Games. Olympics, ”Ward said.
It’s not just the Olympics that have to take into account the searing temperatures.
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