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MCM Earns Greeen Certification for Curtailing Environmental Impact
For the second time, the Marine Corps Marathon (MCM) was received silver-level certification from the Council for Responsible Sport (CRS) for sustainable efforts made during the 2011 event held on Sunday, Oct. 30. The MCM is one of the largest events to receive recognition.
"MCM organizers have a history of producing sustainable events," says Keith Peters, Executive Director of the CRS. "In October 2009, the MCM organization first achieved Silver Certification and, in May 2010, the MCM applied for and achieved CRS Certification for the Marine Corps Historic Half marathon. To earn re-certification for the MCM this year reinforces the organization's ongoing commitment to improvement and sustainability."
"It has been a strategic goal of the MCM to incorporate sustainability throughout the entire organization of the marathon," says Angela Huff, MCM Deputy Director. "With long-range planning and coordination operationally, logistically and even through marketing and promotional efforts, the MCM has been able to maintain a smaller footprint with less impact on the environment."
According to CRS, one of the highlights of the MCM's green initiatives was having Robert Swan, OBE, one of the world's preeminent polar explorers, speak at the Carbo Dining In during MCM Weekend. Swan also ran the 36th MCM and selected two wounded warriors to accompany him on his next polar expedition.
In addition, the MCM accommodated 96 wheel wheelchair and hand cycle athletes for the October event, many of whom are members of the Wounded Warrior Project. "The social side of sustainability is often overlooked," says Peters. "Promoting healthy lifestyles and removing barriers to participation for under-represented groups are just as vital as diverting waste from landfills and reducing wasteful practices"
CRS provides an independent, comprehensive certification for event directors to incorporate environmental and socially responsible initiatives while also informing consumers about the events that adhere to higher standards of sustainability.
The Fredericksburg Expo & Conference Center, home of the Historic Half Healthy Lifestyle Expo, is dedicated to assisting in reducing pollution, excess waste and the footprint all events leave behind. The facility strives to reinforce the importance of the collaborative responsibility all parties have to reduce waste.
Trash collected at the Historic Half including water point cups will be composted. Fredericksburg's Clean & Green Commission contributes to the success of this campaign.
MARINE CORPS MARATHON
An aggressive recycling effort supported by the Rosslyn Business Improvement District and Arlington County's Department of Environmental Services in areas along the course in Arlington and at the Finish Festival led to the collection of 3.2 tons of recycling materials, the largest haul in the three years of this program. Additionally, clothing shed by runners on the streets of Rosslyn will be provided to a local shelter.
MCM events already offer paperless applications for all events, as well as electronic finisher certificates to reduce unnecessary waste. Working closely with Harris Lithographics, the first printing company in the US to be awarded Certification from the Forest Stewardship Council, the MCM race program will be printed entirely on recycled paper and features a custom mix of vegetable-based inks.
Staying at the race headquarters hotel? The Hyatt Regency Washington on Capital Hill is one of only two "Green Seal Approved" hotels in Washington, DC with a host of programs to minimize waste and maximize efficiency. Hargrove, the show designer for the MCM Health and Fitness Expo by GE also operates with a variety of eco-oriented programs.
Runners and spectators saw lots of event signage throughout race weekend to designate locations, provide directions and more. The MCM makes every effort to reuse banners from year to year to reduce waste and save the energy needed to produce more. Additionally, Britten Banner, producers of the MCM finish line banners, reconfigure the non-reusable signage into new products including tote bags.
Arlington County will have two Water Stations set up in the Finish Festival on race day on the corners of Moore St. and Wilson Blvd, and Lynn St. and Wilson Blvd. Be sure to look for the ClearStream recycling containers placed throughout Rosslyn, VA to recycle your Deer Park water bottles from the finish line!
Don't forget to recycle your HeatSheets! Look for the boxes with the red signs to ensure they get in the appropriate recycling boxes!
The MCM encourages running groups and individual runners to pick up trash along their routes when they see it. Every little bit helps! Take photos and e-mail them to the MCM!
TAKE METRO MCM WEEKEND
The simple act of taking public transportation instead of driving a vehicle can reduce hundreds of tons of CO2 emissions. Get around town during the MCM weekend by taking Metro. The DC Armory, home of the Health and Fitness Expo by GE, is convenient to the Blue line. On race morning, the blue and yellow lines to the Pentagon Station offer the easiest access to baggage drop-off and the start area.
Not sure what to do with those athletic shoes that are passed their running prime? Donate them to the MCM Shoe-A-Thon. The MCM will be collect gently used running shoes at all MCM events to be provided to the Arlington Street People's Assistance Network (A-SPAN), which supports people who are homeless, living on the streets or facing homelessness. Look for the Shoe-A-Thon collection boxes at the next race to make your donation.