Shelley Villalobos, the Certification Director at the Council for Responsible Sport, interviews Kim Nemire, the Credit Union Cherry Blossom's Sustainability Coordinator, on the steps Cherry Blossom is taking toward improved sustainability in all facets of the race. Click Here for the Interview.
The 2015 Credit Union Cherry Blossom Run Earned Gold Certification From The Council For Responsible Sport
The Credit Union Cherry Blossom Ten Mile Run is committed to environmental and social sustainability and has achieved gold certification for our efforts by the Council for Responsible Sport (http://www.councilforresponsiblesport.org/). Environmental certification occurs every two years, so this is a recertification year. In 2017, we will be continue to make strides and implement additional techniques to make the event even more sustainable. On race day, if it is recyclable, hang onto it until you find a recycling station on the Washington Monument Grounds or at the National Building Museum.
Our sustainability committee includes five individuals, each focused on expanding a wide variety of efforts aimed at conducting a responsible event. The five areas of focus are Planning & Communications, Procurement, Resource Management, Access & Equity and Community Legacy.
Some of our efforts to reduce waste include:
- Implementing paperless registration for both race participants and volunteers
- Providing virtual goodie bags
- Providing medals only if participants opt in
- Collecting used running shoes at the expo for donation
- Encouraging expo and race vendors to minimize and recycle packaging
- Donating unused food to local food banks
- Collecting and donating all discarded clothing on the course to local organizations
- Upcycling heat sheets through Blankets to Boards: (http://afminc.com/green.asp)
- Composting all food waste and other organic materials, including cups
- Recycling water bottles
Our goal is to divert a minimum of 75% of waste on race weekend.
Some of our other sustainability initiatives include:
- Encouraging the use of Metro to travel to the race and offering a free bike valet parking area
- Procuring water from a local source
- Since 2010, donating nearly $20,000 to Native Energy (http://www.nativeenergy.com/) to offset the carbon footprint of runners traveling to DC for the event
- Working with under-represented groups and non-profit organizations, such as Teens Run DC (http://www.teensrundc.org/), to reduce barriers to participation in our event
- Encouraging participants to visit locally owned businesses in the Washington metropolitan area during race weekend
How you can help us be more sustainable:
- Bring your old running shoes to the expo
- Reduce your carbon footprint on race day by taking public transit, biking or sharing a ride with friends and family
- Consider volunteering for a shift with the sustainability team during race weekend to help with our recycling and composting efforts
- Purchase a carbon offset during registration