Thursday, April 30, 2015

Rio's Brown Stain

Now, some sports news.  A Rio de Janeiro beach has been removed from the list of venues for a pro surfing competition in May, the governing body said Wednesday.  The reason?  Too much sewage in the water.  São Conrado beach receives the untreated sewage from two hillside barrios.  In recent days a main sewage pipe  reputured spewing foul, untreated waste down a rocky outcropping and into the water, creating a huge brown stain.  Imagine how the 'sewagefall' would look on TV!  So the surfers will perform in the nearby high-rent district, Barra da Tijuca, where event officials say they will be excellent surf conditions.  Barra da Tijuca is near the where the sewage and trash filled Jacarepagua lagoon meets the Atlantic.  When tide conditions are right, wind can spread the brown, contaminated water to Barra da Tijuca.

Pollution problems in Brazil, the result of chaotic development and shoddy infrastructure, is also proving to be an issue in the upcoming Olympics.  An extensive clean up of aquatic sites was promised, but local officials have failed to deliver.  Atheletes have begun to grumble about health and safety.