The Summit of Sustainability Awards
Winner, NonProfit Category
The Akron Marathon
The efforts of the Akron Marathon to become an environmentally responsible sporting event since it started a recycling plan in 2008 have shown impressive gains each year. The first year, a quarter ton of material was diverted from the landfill and sent to be recycled, and last year, 5.46 tons of material was diverted from the landfill.
Last year, the Akron Marathon instituted other environmental initiatives in its efforts to be certified by the Council for Responsible Sport as an environmentally responsible sporting event. These included calculating the carbon footprint to travel to and from the race by participants, improved management of water supplies, better control of waste management, expanded information about recycling stations, and creative initiatives to reuse or recycle other race day products that may have otherwise been thrown out.
According to the group’s calculations for 2012, carbon dioxide emissions for vehicular and air passenger travel combined to equal 212.8 metric tons. The group can now use this benchmark calculation to help create a plan to reduce the carbon footprint in years to come.
These efforts to reduce the carbon footprint include providing access to public transportation, promoting carpooling, using alternative fuel vehicles and providing mass transit to and from partner hotels and relay exchange zones.
Last year, the organizers also saved 3,344 gallons of water by filling cups for the runners to the half-full level. This was the first year water usage was measured which will offer a baseline for future years.