In an era of rapidly escalating climate change, resource depletion, plastic pollution and species extinction, the necessity of taking action to minimise our environmental impact has never been as strong as it is today.
With a socially responsible business model at our core, R4W has a duty to deliver ambitiously green, sustainable and low impact events.
We are committed to reducing our environmental impact as an integral part of our business strategy and we commit to achieving the below emissions reduction target by 2030 or sooner.
Run 4 Wales commits to a 2030 net zero carbon emissions reduction target with the aim of being a climate positive events company by 2040.
With over 50,000 participants taking part across our event programme each year, we recognise the important role we have in shaping the environmental behaviours of our participants; as well as the importance of minimising our environmental impact and setting an example in cutting plastics, minimising waste and avoiding unsustainable materials and business practices.
We are committed to reducing our environmental impact and continually improving our environmental performance as an integral part of our business strategy. This is to be backed up by key environmental, social and governance factors (ESG) which will shape our approach to business development and future growth.
To achieve our environmental ambitions, we recognise the need to be brave in pioneering new options.
1) No waste to be sent to landfill by 2023 with an average recycling rate of 90% or above across the whole year within 5 years.
2) Reduce dependency on plastic and damaging materials by 2023.
3) Introduce and implement an ESG policy by 2022.
4) Introduce carbon off-setting initiative for unavoidable carbon emissions by 2023.
5) Educate and change the behaviour of participants on sustainable and environmental issues at our events.
6) Develop a supportive political landscape for sustainability in the events sector across Wales.
7) Green the R4W office and establish a sustainable company-wide ethos.
Actions taken through our Green Action Plan
There’s still a lot of work to do, but here are some of the actions we’ve taken so far through our Green Action Plan.
The Race for Sustainability
We’ve worked closely with Cardiff University as we strive to improve the sustainability of our events. They have conducted research around the Cardiff Half Marathon (you can read the research report here) and co-hosted a sustainability conference with R4W in December 2019.
It brought together event organisers from across Europe and offered a series of talks, workshops sessions and guest speakers. Attendees learnt more about the challenges faced and discussed in groups how events can work together to foster a sustainable future.
R4W are members of the MSO Group – made up of the UK’s largest event organisers who are working together to improve the sustainability of mass participation sports events in the UK.
The MSO Group includes Human Race, The Great Run Company, Run 4 Wales, London Marathon Events and others.
We work with a number of our sponsors and partners, including Brecon Carregand Rubicon Wales to improve the sustainability of our events through a ‘Climate Action Group’. The group works on projects designed to minimise the environmental impact of our events and promote recycling and green initiatives.
Partners also make direct financial contributions to our ‘Climate Action Fund’ – which exclusively supports sustainable development projects and green initiatives such as tree planting, community projects that tackle climate change, renewable energy start-ups, campaigns against pollution in our oceans and natural habitats and securing the rights of indigenous peoples threatened with extinction. In 2022, over £17,000 in donations was awarded.