We are in a world of change. The change is not often for the better and understandably so. We pollute where we go, from individuals to industries. A pack of paper here, some toxic waste and carbon emissions there and air pollution gets so bad in some cities that people have to wear masks to protect their lungs, particularly in the long run.
All of this leads to climate change. Climate change affects everything, from animals who live off the land, to us, people, and everything we do. It also affects sports and here is how.
Heat Rise Leads to Unpredictable Weather
Unpredictable weather might be an issue for sports. How is that a thing?
Will it rain? Well, players have played during rain, in sports like football and soccer. But, what if a typhoon hits, like it did in some countries like Japan, for example?
Typhoons are not the only thing that can make spots worse.From incessant rain to unbearably hot and humid days, sports can take lots of hits. This will affect gameplay, scheduling, tickets, stadiums, everything. This costs a lot of money, but more importantly, it costs people a lot of time, as well. Some can even lose their lives with unpredictable weather. A bit of rain is not dangerous but a typhoon and a constant temperature upwards of 40 degrees Celsius can be fatal, to spectators and athletes.
Good-Bye Open Venues?
The problem with the above-mentioned changes to the weather compromise all open venues. Some venues like most Grand Slam primary stadiums, have a retractable roof to keep the play going and the schedule, to a degree. But how many football stadiums have a retractable roof, and any other venues for other sports? Not that many.With so many changes to the weather, with all the rain and temperature rise, open venues might become unusable in some parts of the world in the following years. Converting to an open/closed venue costs a lot of money because retractable roofs are not cheap to build or maintain.
Air Quality is Getting Worse
While surviving a couple of days or matches during a hot period can be done, it may have consequences over a longer period of time. But the Sun is not our only problem, rather air quality. The air is getting worse, all over the world. Due to emissions of all kinds, life in larger cities is getting difficult, especially during winter when excessive heating leads to more pollution.
If athletes start having breathing problems during matches, sports will have to adapt to that. An athlete needs a lot more air and cleaner at that, because of their performance level during a match or competition. This might lead to more closed venues, with air conditioning and plenty of air filters.
Climate change is changing the world, but not for the better, as of yet. It is affecting everything, from how we live to the sports we love watching and playing.
Sports are suffering from climate change, and while adapting is commendable, slowing down and stopping climate change eventually, should be the main goal.