In alignment with efforts towards sustainable development in trail running, the Green Trail Concept project has recently updated its website to introduce the three fundamental pillars of sustainability – environmental, social, and economic – and its role and importance in the organisation of mountain running events. These pillars provide the guiding framework for assessing and improving the sustainability of trail running events. Therefore, it is essential to clearly define and understand their implications within the context of these events. This clarity serves as the foundation for the initiatives undertaken by Green Trail Concept, particularly the development of sustainability certification for trail running events and the execution of awareness campaigns.
The Green Trail Concept website showcases the main actions to be taken for each of the sustainability pillars:
- Biodiversity Impacts: Addressing habitat loss, disturbance to wildlife, and the introduction of invasive species.
- Depletion of Water Resources: Minimizing the extraction of water to preserve aquatic ecosystems.
- Pollution: Mitigating the pollution of terrestrial and aquatic habitats, emphasizing responsible waste disposal.
- Climate Change and Unsustainable Sourcing: Selecting goods and materials with minimal negative impacts on biodiversity and climate.
- Waste Management: Prioritizing reduce, reuse, and recycling to minimize solid waste disposal.
- Mobility: Promoting sustainable transportation options to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- Social Justice: Promoting fairness, equality, inclusivity, and providing equal opportunities for all trail running participants.
- Social Impact: Contributing positively to the social development and the preservation of the culture of the hosting communities, encouraging community engagement.
- Sports Tourism: Leveraging sports events for regional promotion, promoting responsible tourism, and strengthening cultural identity.
- Economic Impact: Empowering local communities through positive economic effects, while mitigating risks of system saturation.
- Engaging Local Businesses: Establishing meaningful connections between races, runners, and local populations for sustainable economic impact.
The future integration of these three sustainability pillars into the Green Trail Concept’s certification tool will allow to a more complete and successful approach to trail running event management. By addressing environmental, social, and economic aspects, the project aims to inspire organizers to adopt sustainable practices, fostering a positive impact on the environment, society, and local economies.
Take a look to the Green Trail Concept website to learn more on sustainability and on the importance of embracing these pillars as a crucial step towards creating a more sustainable and responsible trail running community.