Barcelona mayor Jordi Hereu has announced that the city is going to make a bid to host the Winter Olympics in 2022 (article in Catalan, Avui). The candidature would be a joint one between the Catalan capital and winter sports resorts in the Pyrenees: inside events, such as ice skating, would take place in Barcelona, while the outdoor sports would be held in the Pyrenees. Hereu made the announcement at the Olympic Museum in Montjuïc, resurrecting memories of Barcelona’s successful hosting of the 1992 Summer Olympics. “Barcelona wants to relive the Olympic dream,” said Hereu during the official announcement of the project this morning. It is hoped that Barcelona can take advantage of the reworked model for the winter games produced by the International Olympic Committee for the event that has been in effect since Turin in 2006. If Barcelona wins the contest to host the event, it will become the first city in the world to have staged both the summer and winter games.
An experienced mountain-climber caught by the recent snow and cold temperatures in the area of Els Ports, in the south of Catalunya, was able to stay alive by taking shelter in a cave (article in Castilian, El Periodico). Pedro Carrasco, a lawyer from Murcia, was trapped for five days in the massif of Els Ports by a snowstorm and low temperatures, which prevented him reaching safety. However, his experience and excellent physical condition, as well as the high-quality equipment that he carried with him, all contributed to him surviving the ordeal. He was taken to the county hospital of Móra d’Ebre on Monday with symptoms of malnutrition and hypothermia, but was discharged after just 12 hours and was then able to return home. “I knew people were looking for me, that an important team was after me and I thought they would end up finding me, although I did have some bad moments and thought I was spending my last night in the cave,” explained Carrasco yesterday.
The Catalan government has cut funding for public universities for 2010 (article in Castilian, La Vanguardia). The reductions in financing range between five and eight percent, depending on the university, and they have meant an important series of cost cutting. As a result, the universities are talking about an "austerity plan", which includes not hiring more professors, or reducing the number of new appointments, and reviewing the costs of services and planned works. In some universities, research has also been put on hold due to the restricted amount of money available.
Also in the news: Barça face Seville in crucial Copa del Rey match (Avui); Spain’s first solar-power car park to be in Catalunya (La Vanguardia); Police have photos of men accused of starting forest fires showing them close to the area of the incident (El Periodico)