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The Valencia Marathon and Half-Marathon are committed to more sustainable trials

18 November, 2019

The Valencia Marathon and Half-Marathon Trinidad Alfonso EDP, as well as the 10-km Valencia Trinidad Alfonso Race, are working hard to make the trials ever more environmentally sustainable and eco-friendly, and to achieve excellence in these respects. In 2019, a host of measures have been jointly taken by the Organisers and collaborators. These measures include eliminating plastic bags, recycling waste and clothing, and cutting CO2 emissions.

Following the policy begun in the last edition with the replacement of Runners’ Bags by reusable EDP gymsacks (made from non-woven textiles), this year the Organisers (SD Correcaminos (running club) and Valencia City Council) have gone a step further, eliminating plastic bags at the Finish (where runners receive their final ration of refreshments). This measure means a saving of over 100,000 bags between the three races: 35,000 in the Half-Marathon, 50,000 in the Marathon, and 15,000 in the 10-km Race. Some 78,500 plastic bags were used in the last edition.

Furthermore, Ecoembes will place over 300 yellow containers (the colour code for tins, tetra-bricks, and plastic bottles) and blue containers for cardboard and paper along the route of the three circuits. Other containers will be sited in The Runners’ Fair to collect waste. In the Valencia Half-Marathon held on the 27th of October, Ecoembes recovered 99.9 per cent of the plastic bottles used during the race. These will all be recycled. Volunteers helped in the collection, making the public aware of the need to cut down on waste and to recycle it.

In 2019 Coca-Cola has also joined in the task. On both the 27th of October and on the 1st of December, the company is helping in the task of collecting plastics and bottles by laying on staff for this purpose in the Start/Finish areas. Coca-Cola’s aid is part of its “Events with a Great Atmosphere” initiative. The company is also behind the slogan sported on all volunteers’ shirts that in English would read “Our Target: Zero Waste”.

The Organisers have also done their best to cut out paperwork. Last year, all papers were eliminated from The Runners’ Bag, and official documents were sent in digital format. In addition, the paper used for the official magazines for the trials is now PEFC approved (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification).

Wholly ecological vehicles

Hyundai’s entry among the trial sponsors has also been a great step towards environmental sustainability. This is because all of the official vehicles supplied by Hyundai are wholly ecological and thus produce zero emissions. Among the vehicle range used, the Hyundai NEXO is particularly noteworthy. This will be the vehicle used to head the race. The car‘s only atmospheric emission is a few drops of water, which actually cleans the air instead of fouling it. It will thus help boost athletes’ performance during the race.

Re-useable Ponchos in the Marathon

One of the new features in this year’s Valencia Marathon on the 1st of December is the withdrawal of the old thermal blankets given that these could not be recycled. Instead, runners will be given the option of acquiring re-usable thermal ponchos for use after finishing the race.

The usual thermal blankets are single-use items and cannot be recycled. By contrast, the new thermal ponchos — which can be bought by all those entering the race — not only keep runners warm and dry but can also be used over and over again.

Koopera will collect unwanted clothing to give it a second use

Once again this year, Koopera Cáritas will be present at the Valencia Marathon at both The Runners’ Fair (where it will have a container for used clothing) and at the Start, where its team will pick up the thousands of kilogrammes of warm clothing runners discard before beginning the race.

Koopera’s mission is to give those at risk of exclusion a chance of social employment by providing environmental services and in fostering re-use, re-cycling, and sustainable consumption. Koopera’s Recycling Plants process textiles, footwear, and other items placed in the charity’s containers.

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