Washington, D.C. – Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet this week co-hosted a bipartisan congressional briefing where five Olympic medalists discussed their experiences with climate change, the impact it has had on winter sports, and the urgent need for Congress to take action. Arielle Gold, an Olympic snowboarder from Steamboat Springs, highlighted how reduced snowpack is already affecting the safety and future of her sport. Bennet co-hosted the briefing with U.S. Senator Susan Collins (R-ME), Protect Our Winters, and Citizens Climate Lobby.
“This bipartisan briefing enabled us to bring new voices into the climate debate that need to be heard,” Bennet said. “For people in my state, outdoor recreation is not just an avocation—it’s a vocation. And that likely rings true for the Olympic athletes here today. Our economy is going to depend on us getting it right on climate, and I am incredibly optimistic that we will do the right thing—whether we have to drag Washington there or not.”
“The number one [passion] in my heart is climate change, and I’m just trying to do whatever I can to reduce my carbon footprint,” Arielle Gold said. “Being a professional snowboarder, I’ve had the opportunity to travel all around the world…to train and ride in some amazing places. To be able to see firsthand the effects of climate change with reduced snowpack and with contests that have been canceled because of warmer temperatures—that’s made it hit that much closer to home for me. I’m grateful to be out here on Capitol Hill using my voice to have a positive impact on the planet and on the sport that I love.”
A video of the full briefing is available HERE.