GreenLight Solutions was brought on by our partner, Brooksee, to divert as much waste as possible from the landfill from this year's Mesa Marathon. GreenLight Solutions was responsible for recycling collection, clothing donations, and donating the leftover food. We created branded recycling and landfill signage to ensure marathon attendees knew where to properly dispose of their waste. Our team brought on 12 volunteers in addition to our two Lead Volunteers and ensured our whole team was educated on waste and recycling best practices. Our amazing team of volunteers were responsible for: ‘Bin guarding’ or directing and educating attendees on recycling etiquette; Transporting and exchanging full bins and bin liners; Sorting the recycling bins to ensure the correct materials are being recycled; and picking up any litter left behind by attendees.
Sustainability by the Numbers:
Coordinating the zero waste efforts for an event this large presented us with some challenges. We use these moments to reflect upon the lessons we learned during the process to continue to improve our efforts. Some of the lessons we learned during this process was to improve our branded signage and streamlining bin sorting. Having clearly labeled, separate receptacles for just bottles, towels, food waste, etc. is necessary for efficiency and to avoid contamination. For an event of this magnitude, we need to increase the number of volunteers and brand ourselves as a “Green Team”. With more volunteers, we will have separate teams for ‘bin guarding’, sorting, offloading, etc. This will help ease zone control and efficiency. For future events, we will use insights like these to help expand our sustainability impact.
Brooksee: Brooksee, LLC is an endurance event management company that puts on the REVEL Race Series, the Portland Marathon, and now the Mesa Marathon. They are respected in the endurance events space and pride themselves on putting on events that participants will remember and want to share with their friends and family.
Republic Services: Republic Services was our partner for recycling management. They are an industry leader in U.S. recycling and non-hazardous solid waste disposal. They have invested in materials recovery and other recycling operations that sort, process and sell recyclable paper, aluminum, glass and other materials. With their help, we were able to to divert literally tonnes of waste
Streets of Joy: Streets of Joy was our partner for food donations for the marathon. Their vision is to assist individuals in overcoming incarceration, addiction, exploitation and homelessness. They provide individuals with comprehensive support services, which will enable them to return to independent living and obtain employment. The donated food from the marathon will go to families and individuals supported by Streets of Joy.
Cornish Pasty Co.: Cornish Pasty is a restaurant local to the Phoenix Area. They stepped in to help us at the last minute and happily received the linens we collected.
Team of Volunteers:
Ashley Weisman (Lead Volunteer)
Caitlyn Witharana (Lead Volunteer)
Jasika Grover (not pictured)
Deken Turmath (not pictured)