Rising temperatures on the planet also threaten winter sports
What will happen to the snow in Beijing
Rising temperatures around the world are a threat to winter sports, according to American skier Gus Schumacher, and the Beijing Winter Olympics are proving it.
The organizers are already seriously considering the use of only artificial snow.
On the slopes of Zhangjiakou, 200 kilometers northwest of Beijing, where cross-country and biathlon sports are held, the slopes were covered with real snowflakes but most of the surface is made of artificial snow.
"I think climate change will have the biggest impact on our sports in the coming years," said British sprint expert James Klagnet.
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has rejected criticism of the decision to use artificial snow in Beijing.
"Artificial snow has been used steadily for decades for winter sports. "It is also very widely used for winter recreational sports," said Marie Sallois on behalf of the IOC.
American skier Schumacher said that the use of artificial snow has an impact on both sports and the environment. "It is more difficult to do what you need to do to compete and train adequately," he said.