Budapest, January 20 (MTI) – The cost of addressing environmental harm caused by the 2024 Budapest Olympics, if the event goes ahead, could add 1,000 billion forints (EUR 3.2bn) to the final tab of hosting the Games, opposition LMP deputy Benedek R. Sallai told a press conference on Friday.
Sallai, head of parliament’s sustainable development committee, insisted that the environmental impact of the Budapest games and the cost of eliminating the infrastructure no longer needed after the event had not been considered so far.
The cost to the environment is normally measured as a proportion of the infrastructure costs, he said.
He added that the budget has been underestimated, and most analysts think that the Olympics cannot be organised at less than 3,000 billion forints.
Hosting the Olympics is not exclusively a Budapest matter but concerns all Hungarians, Sallai said, arguing that the money used to finance the project and undo the environmental damage would put a strain on the country’s GDP.
He said he would propose that the parliamentary committee which he heads should hold a hearing concerning plans for Olympic locations as soon as possible, since environmentally protected and Natura 2000 sites would be under threat due to Hungary’s bid to host the Games.
LMP recently joined a civil initiative to collect signatures for a referendum to thwart Budapest’s Olympic bid.