LA’s Mayor Has A Brilliant Idea To Land The Olympics And Fund Youth Sports At The Same Time

Garcetti is willing to give the 2024 Olympics to Paris in exchange for an important concession

Image via LA2024/Instagram

Los Angeles is one of the few places left that actually wants to host the Olympic Games. Huge cost overruns to build up for an Olympiad, followed by the expense of maintaining a bunch of white elephant sports facilities after the athletes leave (How much use is there for a velodrome anyway?) is causing potential host cities to shy away. However, when LA welcomed the world in 1984, the city actually turned a profit on the Games. Even better, those profits have been funding youth sports initiatives for more than 30 years through the LA84 Foundation.

So getting the Games back has been a pet project of LA Mayor Eric Garcetti. He and the LA Organizing Committee have been all in to land the 2024 Summer Olympics, facing stiff competition from Paris—which lost out on the 2012 Games to London and seems to have the inside track. Which means that it might be better for LA to aim for 2028 instead. Garcetti has repeatedly stated he wants no part of that. “We’re eager, ready, and excited to host 2024, and that is all we are focused on,” he said earlier this year.

But it appears Garcetti and company have devised a plan that could make everyone happy: Paris gets their Games, LA hosts one too, and, even better, LA gets more youth sports funding out of an Olympics.

Garcetti confirmed that he’​s in negotiations with the International Olympic Committee to pass on the 2024 Olympics so Paris can host them, in exchange for LA waiting four extra years and taking the 2028 edition. The catch is that the IOC would kick in funds for the mayor’s ambitious youth sports initiative.

“As we’ve talked to the Olympics, they’ve asked us to think about—both Paris and us—what would it take for us to consider one of us going first and the other going second,” Garcetti said at a press conference. “My dream is not so much just to bring the Olympics here, but is to bring youth sports for free to every zip code.”

If this plan goes forward, the IOC will have to decide next week whether to accept a joint bid from two cities at the same time, which it has never done before. That would mean that when the IOC awards the 2024 Games this September, they could bypass a bidding process for the 2028 Olympics and give it to LA right then. Russia, of course, hearing of this plan, has instantly thrown a wrench in the works, now saying they’ll bid for 2028.

That could mean that Paris will get the 2024 Games and LA might possibly wind up with nothing. Classic Russia: They actively try to subvert both America and France, but only effectively derail the United States.

via GOOD / YouTube

Last Friday, millions of people in 150 countries across the globe took to the streets to urge world leaders to enact dramatic solutions to combat climate change.

The Climate Strike was inspired, in part, by Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old girl from Sweden who has captured worldwide attention for her tireless work to hold lawmakers responsible for the climate crisis.

The strike gave people across the planet the opportunity to make their voices heard before the U.N. General Assembly Climate Summit in New York City on Monday.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
Julian Meehan

Young leaders from around the world are gathering at the United Nations Headquarters in New York Saturday to address arguably the most urgent issue of our time. The Youth Climate Summit comes on the heels of an international strike spearheaded by Greta Thunberg, the 16-year-old climate activist from Sweden, who arrived in New York via emissions-free sailboat earlier this month.

Translated from Swedish, "berg" means "mountain," so it may feel fated that a young woman with Viking blood in her veins and summit in her name would be at the helm. But let's go out on a limb and presume Thunberg, in keeping with most activists, would chafe at the notion of pre-ordained "destiny," and rightly so. Destiny is passive — it happens to you. It's also egomaniacal. Change, on the other hand, is active; you have to fight. And it is humble. "We need to get angry and understand what is at stake," Thunberg declared. "And then we need to transform that anger into action."

This new generation of activists' most pernicious enemy is denial. The people in charge — complacent politicians and corporation heads who grossly benefit from maintaining the status quo — are buffered from real-life consequences of climate change. But millions of people don't share that privilege. For them, climate change isn't an abstract concept, but a daily state of emergency, whether it comes in the form of "prolonged drought in sub-Saharan Africa…devastating tropical storms sweeping across Southeast Asia, the Caribbean and the Pacific…[or] heatwaves and wildfires," as Amnesty International reportsare all too real problems people are facing on a regular basis.

RELATED: Greta Thunberg urges people to turn to nature to combat climate change

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
Climate Action Tracker

In 2016, 196 countries signed the Paris Agreement, pledging to combat climate change by taking action to curb the increase in global temperatures. The Paris Agreement requires countries to report on their emissions and what steps they're taking to implement those plans. Now that the countries are coming together again for the U.N. Climate Action Summit in New York City, it's worth taking a look at what kind of progress they've made.

The Climate Action Trackerkeeps tabs on what each country is doing to limit warming, and if they're meeting their self-set goals. Countries are graded based on whether or not their actions would help limit warming to 1.5 degrees C.

According to a recent article from National Geographic, The Gambia, Morocco, and India are at the head of the class. "Even though carbon emissions in The Gambia, Morocco, and India are expected to rise, they'll fall short of exceeding the 1.5-degree Celsius limit," the article reads. Saudi Arabia, Russia and the United States, on the other hand, get a big fat F. "Projected emissions in Saudi Arabia, Russia, and the United States are far greater than what it would take to limit warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius."

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet

September 20th marks the beginning of a pivotal push for the future of our planet. The Global Climate Strike will set the stage for the United Nations Climate Action Summit, where more than 60 nations are expected to build upon their commitment to 2015's Paris Agreement for combating climate change.

Millions of people are expected to take part in an estimated 4,000 events across 130 countries.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
Ottawa Humane Society / Flickr

The Trump Administration won't be remembered for being kind to animals.

In 2018, it launched a new effort to reinstate cruel hunting practices in Alaska that had been outlawed under Obama. Hunters will be able to shoot hibernating bear cubs, murder wolf and coyote cubs while in their dens, and use dogs to hunt black bears.

Efforts to end animal cruelty by the USDA have been curtailed as well. In 2016, under the Obama Administration, the USDA issued 4,944 animal welfare citations, in two years the numbers dropped to just 1,716.

Keep Reading Show less