In Tahiti, in French Polynesia, the construction site for the tower from which the judges will observe the surfing competitions of the Paris Olympics, scheduled between 27 and 30 July 2024, was temporarily stopped. Last Friday a barge used for the work on the construction site had hit the coral reef, damaging it: the local government, which is autonomous but dependent on the French government, is evaluating ways to reduce the environmental impact of the construction site. French Polynesia is a French overseas community, and is located more than 15 thousand kilometers from Paris.
On Wednesday the International Surfing Association (ISA), the federation recognized by the International Olympic Committee that oversees surfing, said it welcomed the decision, arguing that the protection of the Teahupo’o reef, where the competitions will take place, is priority. After the release of videos showing the barge accident, many surfers protested against the environmental impact of the event. French Polynesia’s bid to host the races had received similar criticism since its announcement.
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