The International Olympic Committee is delaying the selection of the 2030 Winter Olympics host city after discussing climate change and sustainability during its executive board meeting on Tuesday. The 2030 host city was originally scheduled to be announced after the 2023 IOC session.
The executive board is giving the Future Host Commission more time to look at the preliminary results of academic research that shows a potential reduction in the number of climate-reliable hosts. A proposal to ensure climate reliability would require hosts to show average minimum temperatures of below zero degrees for snow competition venues during the Winter Games over a 10-year period. Another idea discussed was the rotation of the Olympic Winter Games within a pool of hosts.
During Tuesday's meeting, there was also a discussion about a double award for 2030 and 2034 to create stability for winter sports and the Olympic Winter Games. However, the IOC said this needs more exploration as no conclusion was reached.
With the extra time, the future host commission is also expected to consult with other interested parties, international federations, athletes, winter sports industry experts, and the International Paralympic Committee.
"The new, flexible approach to electing Olympic hosts was designed so the IOC could respond swiftly and effectively to ever-changing global circumstances, for the benefit of the athletes, all Olympic Games participants, and the whole sports movement," IOC member Octavian Morariu said in a statement.
Two cities in Italy -- Milan and Cortina d'Ampezzo -- are still set to co-host the 2026 Winter Olympics.