The Winter Olympics started last week. For athletes snowboard or snowboarding from Team USA, Taylor Gold, the Games serve as a reminder of the changes taking place on planet Earth.
In an interview with the Associated Press, he said, “I feel sad that we need so much artificial snow to sustain the Winter Olympics.”
Gold participated in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Eight years later, Earth is on record for its hottest temperature ever, according to recent reports compiled by NASA and NOAA, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, respectively.
“The biggest threat facing these cold mountainous regions is a warming climate.” That’s what Tessa Garte, a doctoral candidate at the University of Colorado, Boulder, told the AP. He keeps track of the conditions in the previous Winter Olympics host cities.
“A lot of it got really warm. Not only warms up, but warms up very quickly. And obviously the consequences are huge for the Winter Olympics, as well as for the local economy, local climate and weather.”
Experts say that with too much carbon emissions trapped in the atmosphere, starting in 2050 only 10 of the 19 Winter Olympic host cities will be able to return to the Games if global warming trends continue.
In another development, Chinese state television released a video that VOA could not independently verify, showing Chinese astronaut Wang Yaping conducting a half chemical experiment, half performing art on the Tiangong Space Station. Yaping, the Chinese government says, mixed chemicals in space to create the iconic Olympic Ring symbol.
Meanwhile, last week, the private space flight company SpaceX launched a pair of satellites. One of them carried a US spy satellite called the US National Reconnaissance Office. Satellite launch broadcasts were stopped before the classified part of the mission was carried out.
Meanwhile, another launch with an Italian satellite has been delayed three times due to weather conditions and once because a cruise ship violated the launch site boundary.
Most recently, last week, Australian astronomers discovered a bright pulsating object in the Milky Way galaxy, about 4,000 light-years from Earth. They found that in 2018, the object emitted a powerful wave of energy once every 18 minutes. Astronomers haven’t said what it is, but they’ve crossed out the possibility of it being an alien life form.[rd/jm]