Green, Inclusive, Open and Clean Beijing Winter Olympics Ready for the World

Ma Xinmin
Chinese Ambassador to Sudan

In less than a month, all eyes will be on China as the flame for the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games will be lit in the National Stadium, also known as the Bird’s Nest, on February 4, 2022. Fourteen years later, China’s capital Beijing will stage its second Olympics, making itself the first city in the world to host both the Summer and Winter Games.

The world is turning its eyes to China, and China is ready. Over the course of more than six years of meticulous preparation, China has been committed to a green, inclusive, open, and clean approach. It has overcome the severe impact caused by COVID-19 on sports events worldwide. Through meticulous and solid work, the preparatory process has been advanced in an orderly manner. Chinese President Xi Jinping stressed that a successful 2022 Beijing Olympic Games in China’s solemn commitment to the international community and that China will work with the International Olympics Committee (IOC) and the international community to ensure streamlined, safe, and splendid Olympic and Paralympic Games.

Let’s meet in Beijing and enjoy ourselves at a green Game that will be streamlined but not simple. As guided by China’s new development philosophy, environmental friendliness and sustainability have been unique features of the Beijing Olympic Winter Games. For the first time in Olympic history, all venues for the Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics will be powered by green electricity.

Carbon dioxide will be used for making ice, thus bringing carbon emissions close to zero. The large-scale application of this technology is another first in the history of the Olympic Games. By using such high-tech tools, China ensures that the goal of carbon neutrality will be achieved throughout the Games. Many venues for the upcoming Winter Games are leveraging existing venues and facilities from the 2008 Summer Games and could be converted back into the summer mode to host summer sports events. One example is the National Aquatics Center previously nicknamed the “Water Cube”. It has earned a new nickname, the “Ice Cube” after it is transformed to host curling and wheelchair curling competitions. Another good example is the Wukesong Sports Center which was the arena for basketball games in 2008 and is now modified into the ice hockey facility for the Beijing Winter Olympics.

For each venue, a post-match utilization planning scheme has been completed to benefit the local people in the long run. This helps achieve the vision of engaging 300 million Chinese people in ice and snow sports and making winter sports popular. In this way, the Winter Olympic Games will yield constant, good social effects.

Let’s meet in Beijing and enjoy ourselves at a splendid Game that will be safe and clean. The Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics and Paralympics will be the first Winter Games amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Low temperatures in winter are detrimental to epidemic prevention and control, and the world is now in an adverse situation as the Omicron variant is raging around the world.

That said, China remains committed to ensuring the health and safety of all participants in the Games and the people of China as the top priority. It has maintained effective epidemic prevention and control measures, and developed and published two editions of the Beijing 2022 Playbooks jointly with the IOC. During the period from October 5 to December 31, 2021, over 2,000 athletes from across the world were invited to compete in ten test events. These events, organized and held under the same high standard for the Olympic Games, were employed to test every component of the whole-process closed-loop management, thus providing a solid foundation for safe and successful Beijing Winter Olympics and Paralympics. The IOC President Thomas Bach hailed the preparation work of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics as a “miracle”.

There is a Chinese phrase “clean as ice and snow” which means pure and noble. To run a clean Olympic Games, China has adopted a thrifty approach with strict budget management, cost restrictions, and enhanced in-process supervision, making the Winter Olympics as pure as ice and snow. More importantly, China has zero-tolerance toward doping and insists that Chinese athletes should win a clean gold medal for the Olympic Spirit and obey rules and laws even if they are unable to win a gold medal.

Let’s meet in Beijing and enjoy ourselves at a united Games that choose openness over seclusion. Sports are a common language of mankind. Bringing together people from different countries, ethnic groups, and cultural backgrounds, the International Olympic Movement has been an emblem of unity and friendship of mankind. Facing major reform, transformation, and development accelerating across the world and global challenges emerging here and there, it becomes more imperative for us to forge unity and friendship and share weal and woe.

At the recent 76th Session of the UN General Assembly, a resolution on Olympic Truce for the Beijing Winter Olympic Games, which was co-sponsored by a record number of 173 Member States in recent years, was adopted by consensus. In addition, the recently concluded Eighth Ministerial Conference of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation (FOCAC) adopted the Dakar Declaration, stressing support for the Beijing Winter Olympic Games. This speaks volumes about the support and confidence of the international community in the success of the Beijing Winter Olympics. It also demonstrates the commitment of people worldwide to meet challenges together and build a better world with enhanced unity and cooperation.

The Beijing Winter Olympics is a grand gathering for winter Olympians and winter sports enthusiasts. As guided by the official motto “Together for a Shared Future”, China has invited the IOC, the International Paralympics Committee (IPC), federations of winter Olympic sports, and other related experts to engage in the preparatory process. China will give a warm welcome to all athletes arriving in Beijing and Zhangjiakou and inspire them to demonstrate the new Olympic motto of “Faster, Higher, Stronger — Together”. It is clear that the diplomatic boycott of the Beijing Winter Olympics staged by a handful of countries, in an attempt to politicize sports events, create division and provoke confrontations, is against the will of the people and doomed to failure.

In the Olympic Spirit and with the concerted efforts of all parties involved, China is bound to present the world a streamlined, safe, and splendid Games as scheduled and will work with them to make the cause of international Olympics flourish. Let’s meet at the Beijing Winter Olympics and open up a new chapter of unity and friendship of mankind!

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