Climate change: A threat for sports industry

April 8, 2019 10:20 AM |

Climate Change and Sports

Conversations on climate change always dominate global airwaves with its impact overshadowing all aspects of our lives.

Did anyone ever thought that climate change can possibly affect sport as well? For many playing sports is an abiding passion. Exercising is people's way of keeping themselves healthy.

Given the climate threats visible on the horizon, it is quite possible that one fine day we might just have to alter the way we play sports. For that matter we might even have to limit certain sports to specific geographical areas.

In present world, nearly around 400 extreme weather events occur every year around the world. These events tend to take toll on the physical infrastructure of countries, destroying pitches and stadium. This eventually alters the face of sport beyond recognition.

According to international climate studies, cyclones and growing prevalence of rain and thunderstorm activities have led to disappearance of vast swath of green spaces and playgrounds. Such spaces are very important for practicing golf, cricket and other sports.

Like in tennis, rules that are applied over several decades in the past have recently been altered to factor in the changing weather patterns. Recently, at the US Open Tennis Championship 2019, male players were allowed to take short breaks during the match for the very first time.

Similarly, at time of Australian Open 2019, a 'heat stress scale' was replaced by the traditional 'wet bulb index' for measuring temperature as part of a new Extreme Heat Policy. All the matches being played on outer courts were suspended if the heat stress scale reached its maximum five-point mark. This was solely done to ensure the well-being of the players.

Universally, 70% of coastal cities that are economic and sports hub are under the threat of tidal waves and rise in sea levels, which would be the outcome of a hotter Earth. All the infrastructure of such cities is at a major risk of being swept away. It would also take away all the sports events, especially water sports.

It is very important for each one of us to lessen the causes of climate change and reduce carbon footprint.

Image Credit: Climate Nexus

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