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Seine Water in ‘Alarming’ Condition 100 Days Before the Olympics


Picture this: the sun setting over the Seine, casting a golden glow on the waters that are soon to host some of the world’s top athletes during the 2024 Paris Olympics and Paralympics. Sounds picturesque, right?

But there’s a twist – the very waters set to showcase triathlons and marathon swims might not be as pristine as you’d hope.

 

The Murky Waters of Paris

Imagine training for years, only to swim through less-than-clean waters. That’s the concern of Surfrider Foundation Europe, a veteran in the fight for cleaner oceans and rivers.

They’ve raised a red flag about the Seine’s water quality, fearing it might not be safe for the upcoming 2024 Paris Olympics.

These concerns also extend to the planned public swimming in the Seine post-Olympics in 2025. It’s like planning a picnic and realizing your basket is full of spoiled food – a definite downer!

The Seine river
Is the Seine River truly prepared for Olympic swimmers?

 

Who’s Behind the Research?

The studies come from the seasoned Surfrider Foundation Europe, known for their 30-year battle for clean aquatic environments.

They’ve been tirelessly working to ensure that the Seine is ready for both Olympic athletes and future swimmers.

 

How Was the Study Conducted?

Surfrider didn’t just dip a toe into the issue; they dived deep. They conducted bi-monthly water tests at key points along the Seine, measuring levels of E. coli and Enterococci – bacteria that wave a big red flag about fecal contamination.

Think of it as checking if the milk smells fresh before you take a sip.

They weren’t just reacting to bad weather or random bad days; their testing was as scheduled and methodical as a train timetable.

 

The Verdict on the Seine

screenshot data seine water
Color codes: blue (safe), orange (moderate risk), red (high contamination, above AAFSET safety thresholds)

The results were eye-opening. Most of the samples showed bacteria levels way over the safe limits for swimming and water sports. That’s like finding out your dream swimming pool is actually a mirage.

In fact, if these were official swimming spots, most days would see a big “No Swimming” sign.

Surfrider isn’t just throwing these facts out to scare you. They’re backed by years of expertise and a real concern for the athletes and everyday folks who dream of splashing around in an urban swimming spot.

They’ve got plans and want to be part of the conversation to clean up the Seine, making sure that the postcard scenes of Paris match the reality.

 

What’s Next?

As we inch closer to the Olympics, and with plans to open the Seine for public swimming in 2025, the clock is ticking. Surfrider’s findings are a call to action for all involved to take a serious look at the water treatments and ensure they’re not just a temporary fix for the games but a lasting solution for the city.

So, what can we do? It’s about getting informed, asking questions, and supporting actions that make these waterways safe and enjoyable for everyone.

Whether you’re an Olympic athlete or a Paris-loving tourist dreaming of a swim in the Seine, it’s about ensuring that everyone can dive in without a second thought about what’s lurking below the surface. Let’s make sure that the city of lights shines brightly on clean, welcoming waters.



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