Water treatment facilities in Japan have been under fire for a month now, with locals demanding a thorough investigation into the safety of the water systems and the quality of the drinking water.
This was followed by the arrests of dozens of officials for corruption, with one official charged with stealing more than 100 million yen (US$1.1 million) from the Japanese government.
But while this is bad news for Japan’s Olympic bid, it’s not the only problem facing the Olympic Village.
The city’s water treatment plants are located in an area that has been dubbed “the Olympic Graveyard,” and residents have been complaining for months about the deteriorating conditions.
According to a study by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government, the city’s drinking water has deteriorated at an alarming rate since 2010.
“A large number of people living in the Olympic village have expressed their fears about the health and safety of drinking water,” a letter signed by more than 500 residents reads.
“The public has become very concerned over the situation and has expressed their concerns to the authorities, but it is not yet clear if the authorities are taking the situation seriously.”
The letter continues, “There are no immediate plans for any changes in the water system, but residents are not allowed to enter the village or drink the water, even in private.”
The Japanese Olympic Village, as it is known, has been the site of numerous serious pollution incidents in recent years.
In 2013, two large scale water plant fires killed more than 300 people, and two years later, a massive explosion rocked the Olympic Complex, which is home to the Olympic Rings and the Games Village.
In August of 2016, a series of earthquakes killed more that 300 people in the nearby town of Shizuoka, triggering a tsunami that devastated the region.
“We have been living in this disaster for over a decade,” resident Kei Kawashima told CNN.
“It has been like this for a long time, and I don’t think there’s any change in the situation.”
According to residents, the Olympic complex, which includes the Olympic rings and the village, is among the most polluted in Japan.
In 2016, residents filed a lawsuit against the Tokyo Olympic Committee, claiming they were denied the right to enter and use the village because of the amount of polluted water in the area.
The residents are currently petitioning the Tokyo Municipal Council for permission to petition the government for a second time.
However, this time, they have more allies in their fight.
Local residents have also been petitioning authorities to open a public inquiry into the water management system, which they say is in violation of the local law, the Local Government Act, which states that the Tokyo metropolitan government cannot approve any projects until there is a thorough review of the infrastructure.
The residents’ petition is expected to be considered by the Japanese High Court later this month.