Reducing our carbon footprint, decreasing waste and improving sustainability
Since 2010 all Bedford Harriers events have utilised Ipico reusable timing chips. These timing chips are used repeatedly, only requiring replacement when not returned by a participant.
Timing chips are secured to runners’ shoes with 100% biodegradable Kraft paper-covered wire twist ties. At the end of each race the biodegradable wire twists are removed and collected for composting.Additionally, any race entry pack not collected has its wire twist ties recovered and they are used at the next Harriers event.
Race packs are no longer mailed to participants. Participants collect their race packs on race day, thereby saving fuel and resources that would otherwise be used to deliver them. This also saves on postal charges which helps to maintain lower entry fees for participants and generates additional surplus for the benefit of the event charities.Un-issued race packs have their contents removed and the envelopes are recycled.
Baggage tags are manufactured from recyclable card with sisal string ties. Baggage tags are recovered from any un-issued race packs and over-stickered ready for use at the next Harriers event.
Technological advances mean that drinking cups supplied for use at water stations are manufactured from biodegradable PLA bioplastic that can be recycled or composted.
Water stations require a tremendous amount of water to keep runners safely hydrated. Each water station requires 205 litres for each pass of the water station.Runners have a right to expect that water supplied is of potable quality and uncontaminated. Water is provided in recyclable 5 litre bottles. The empty bottles are recyclable but have also been used to construct a greenhouse at a local school.
Hygienic rubber gloves for use at water stations and in food handling & preparation are supplied in cardboard cartons of 100. To avoid unnecessary waste, gloves are repacked (in a hygienic environment) into reusable zip-lock plastic pouches in pairs of 10 per pouch.The cardboard cartons are recycled.
Discarded material collections at water stations, the finish area and Race HQ use biodegradable refuse sacks.
Plastic cable ties are used in every Harriers event, principally for the securing of course signage. Trials are currently being undertaken using releasable and reusable plastic cable ties. If the trial is successful, this will save resources in the manufacture of cable ties.
Made from a renewable resource, wooden stirrers eco-friendly. They are biodegradable, hygienic and are suitable for stirring in milk, cream or sugar. Wood can handle the high heat of beverages without transferring any wood taste.
Cold snacks prepared in a hygienic environment are offered for sale in compostable 37gms brown Kraft paper bags.
Expanded polystyrene foam cups are used for serving hot drinks. Whilst first appearances may suggest that they are single use nevertheless a simple but ingenious idea will provide a sustainable and reusable second life to the humble cup. Simply pierce the bottom of the cup with the tip of a pencil to make a small drainage hole thus turning a single use cup into a reusable seedling/cutting pot for gardeners.