Paris prepares a clean Seine River for the 2024 Olympic Games competitions

is Paris, Sena river will be clean enough just in time for the Olympic Games 2024. The French capital is on the right track to achieve this long-awaited goal, according to a statement from the local Mayor’s Office last week. If the Seine is made swimmable, it would be quite a change for a busy urban waterway that was once known for its level of dirt. This would allow France to host aquatic competition events in one of the most famous and photogenic metropolitan riverscapes in the world.

The hope is that the Olympics mark the beginning of a it was swimming in the seine. The city wants to open permanent aquatic facilities at five sites along the river starting in 2025. Two in the heart of the city on the right-hand side facing Île de la Cité and Île Saint-Louis, one at the foot of the Eiffel Tower , another in the Bois de Boulogne park and another in Bercy, in the southeast of Paris. This network of spas would begin to expand throughout the region that same year, managing to open up to 23 more spas on the Seine and its upstream tributary, the Marne, and through the entire metropolis of Greater Paris.

cleaning will override 101 years of official disapproval of river swimming in Paris, which began in 1923 when the city banned swimming in the Seine and ended the open-bottomed boats that used to crowd the quay. Rebellious swimmers continued to break the rules for decades, but increased pollution during the French capital’s expansion at the end of the 20th century has largely prevented even the most daring from taking a dip. Deter high levels of bacteria transmitted by water and even the risk of contracting leptospirosis from rats urine —a life-threatening disease—(city authorities routinely drag rusty bicycles, boxes, and other large objects out of the river).

Paris: a tour of the city from both shores

That danger, the city says, is now a thing of the past. In 2022, tests of river water at planned Olympic sites and on the same summer days the games will take place next year found the water quality was swimmable. safely 91% of the time.

The cost of this continued purification of the Seine has been high. paris invested €1.4 billion (about 1,540 million dollars) in a huge storm water drain with a capacity of up to 30 Olympic pools. It has also banned boats from dumping their sewage into the river, offering boat-dwellers up to €6,000 to retrofit their boat so it can discharge at a municipal pumping station. Beyond the river banks, the mayor’s office has also initiated a citywide tree planting program that will allow the ground to absorb more rain by creating a more open and water-permeable terrain.

Outside the limits of Paris, the cleanup also further limits the treatment of water that flows into the Seine and the Marne, and the renovation of 23,000 homes upstream throughout the Parisian region, whose wastewater currently reaches the river system directly.

Keeping the waters clean enough to swim in has already been difficult to achieve in the past. In 2017, the city inaugurated a basin in the Canal Saint-Martin, which empties into the Seine for swimming, but had to close it almost immediately because bacteria quickly repopulated the water. Not surprisingly, the locals interviewed by the newspaper the parisian They said that getting into the water required a great leap of faith on your part.

However, if Paris manages to keep its waters clean, it will achieve more than just a photo opportunity during the Olympics. The city’s attempts to plant more trees and phase out harder surfaces will not only prevent stormwater runoff, but will contribute to the overall strength of Paris by reduce pollution and take advantage of the city’s heat island effect. Converting the Seine quay into a swimming area would also attract many visitors (admittedly a mixed blessing) and contribute to the region’s biodiversity. He number of fish species on the river has already warned of just three in the 1990s to 34 today.

Opening the river for summer games and making happy memories could also have a positive ripple effect for a increased climate and environmental actionby showing people that a cleaner, greener future will not only require lifestyle changes, but will provide new spaces for relaxation and relaxation.

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