Rio de Janeiro’s mayor has acknowledged that the run-up to the 2016 Olympic games has proven a “wasted opportunity” to clean up the city’s blighted waterways.
Eduardo Paes told SporTV television station on Monday that authorities “should have been able to achieve the goal” of cleaning up Guanabara Bay, where the Olympic sailing events will be held.
He added, “It is indeed a wasted opportunity.”
Cleaning up the bay was touted in Rio’s Olympic bid as one of the games’ enduring legacies. But with just 500 days to go until the start of the games, authorities have made little progress in staunching the flow of raw sewage and household trash into the bay.
Athletes have raised concerns about possible health problems that could result from competing in the waters.