While Athens is on average marginally hotter than previous Olympic host cities, low humidity and fresh northerly winds mean the capital will be cooler than Atlanta and about as warm as Barcelona, the Games organizing committee said yesterday. Athens 2004 issued a statement in cooperation with the National Meteorological Service arguing that the average apparent temperature, a combination of the average highest temperature with average humidity levels, for August in Athens is 33 degrees Celsius (91 Fahrenheit). The statement gave the apparent temperature for Atlanta – where the 1996 Games were held – as 35C (95F), Barcelona’s (1992) as 32C (90F) and Los Angeles’s (1984) as 31C (88F). «In August, the likelihood of the temperature exceeding 37C (99F) on any single day is only 4 percent,» the statement said. It added that the main factor that keeps the heat «at bearable levels» are the annual meltemia, northerly winds that usually blow in August. The sea also helps improve the climate, the statement said.