XTERRA Wellington, taking place on February 1, has committed to a series of sustainability initiatives to reduce waste and lessen the event’s environmental impact on the landscape.
In the first in a series of sustainability initiatives around the 2020 XTERRA World Tour, the season-opener at XTERRA Wellington on February 1 has committed to reducing waste and environmental impact by ‘doing everything it can to reduce the impact it has on the landscape.’
“We believe we should protect where we play,” said Gillian Barsanti from the organizing team at the event’s on-the-ground organiser Barefoot Sport. “In fact, we go one step further and say it is our duty to improve and safeguard our land for the generations to come.
“We can only run this event because of the amazing landscape New Zealand and Kāpiti has given us, and therefore we must protect it.”
Running several initiatives concurrently, XTERRA Wellington will reduce the waste it creates and is aiming for zero waste produced by participants throughout the day. This means that no product supplied or purchased on site will create general waste.
“We will have two bin options on site,” explained Gillian. “Compost and Recycle. Nothing sold on site will require it to be disposed of as general waste. It’s exciting. All our participants and supporters will receive reusable cups and eco vegetable reusable bags that they will be able to keep and use proudly at home. It’s like another little collectors’ item.”
Bengy Barsanti, Event Director and Gillian’s husband, added, “This is one of our favourite initiatives. I always hated ending up with a bunch of useless paper and soap testers in my race pack that always ended up in the bin. We love that we have a small ability to change that. Our participants will still get the goodies they are looking for but all via a digital experience they can then use with our generous sponsors. Much better value and much more relevant.”
Following a similar initiative recently seen in music events across NZ, Bengy added that he is excited they are not going it alone. “It’s just awesome. It’s great to see like-minded folks trying to do their bit. There is a real buzz around ensuring events don’t create the strew of rubbish you currently see following any festival.
“Our vendors have been amazing at coming on board with our vision; and we now have full agreement from our vendors to sell no single use plastics, and all food stuff will be provided on fully compostable plates and cutlery.”
In addition, all participants and supporters have the ability to purchase native trees that will be planted on the land at Whareroa Farm, one of the key pieces of land competitors will run and bike over, and the trophies all are all made from reclaimed Totara that was going to rot on the farm and has been transformed by the Kāpiti Menzshed.
Ann Evans from the Whareroa Guardians Trust was pleased to see another group take an interest in the land. She said, “We have had a number of school and community groups plus our huge group of volunteers help out at our planting days over the last 14 years but never a combined gift of trees and planting.
“It’s great to have a commercial group enhancing the environment. What is exciting is that in years to come participants will see the land transform around them thanks to their generosity and effort. We hope some of them will become volunteers at Whareroa in the future.”