Olympic Golf Course Construction Could Be Halted
Embattled supporters of the Rio De Janeiro 2016 Olympic Summer Games got more bad news this week. State prosecutors have filed a legal brief with the courts citing the city of Rio De Janerio and the stadium contractors for flagrantly disregarding environmental protection laws during the construction of the new golf course for the 2016 Summer Games.
After a controversial and politically heated bid campaign, there were concerns about safety and water quality. The new legal troubles are unwelcome, but unsurprising to followers of Rio's bid. In recent years, other Olympic bids have been overturned by popular vote, while host countries were criticized for human rights violations.
The golf course in question is being carved out of a nature preserve, and is near completion according to local reports. Environmental concerns have been paramount all along. The city, and contractor made revisions to the course plan in an attempt to mitigate some of the damage. State prosecutors termed their efforts “laughable”.
"The public prosecutors' office did not accept the proposed deal because ... the defendants did nothing more than adapt the environment to the (golf course) project and not the project to the environment, as it should be,” stated the 27-page legal brief. “Even the eventual possibility of not fulfilling the deals and contracts with the Olympic committee must not supersede the need to preserve the environment. Breaking the contracts will only bring about eventual fines while the environmental damage, through the destruction of an important ecosystem, will never be repaired."