[REGIONAL NEWS] How climate change could impact — and even help — Salt Lake City’s bid to host another Winter Olympics

 
As Salt Lake City pursues hosting another Olympic Winter Games, possibly in 2030 or 2034, the Olympic movement and its athletes are increasing worried about the threat climate change poses to winter sports — and to humanity./
Francisco Kjolseth/ Tribune photo illustration

By Tony Semerad and Christopher Kamrani | Salt Lake City Tribune

As Salt Lake City continues its quest to host another Winter Games a decade or more from now, many Olympic athletes say they’re already in a downhill race against disappearing winters.

You can feel that desperate chase in the life of U.S. snowboardcross athlete Alex Deibold, who won a bronze medal at the 2014 Games in Sochi, Russia. He’s among a growing number of Olympians speaking out on climate change as they see weather conditions for skiing, sliding and ice sports gradually melting away.

The 33-year-old moved to Utah full time two years ago, and his Olympic dreams have made him a witness to vanishing glaciers in the Alps, akin to islands swallowed by the rising sea. He’s seen slushy and sometimes dangerous course conditions and tournaments canceled due to a lack of snow. New weather wild cards seem to emerge every season, even at once-reliable training venues.

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