In the last four years, SEGAS the organizer of the ATHENS CLASSIC MARATHON, the non governmental organization IΝSΤITUTE TEAM FOR THE WORLD ENVIRONMENTAL ALLIANCE 2004+ and the sustainability advisors GLOBAL CHALLENGES have joined together, with the support of Coca-Cola Hellas and Coca Cola 3E, to promote environmental awareness through the unique sport and cultural event of the ATHENS CLASSIC MARATHON . These joint efforts have received international acknowledgement.
In the last four years (2006-2009) over 1000 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent have been offset and over three tons of pure plastic have been recycled, making the Athens Classic Marathon the most environmentally friendly Marathon in the world.
The ngo INSTITUTE TEAM FOR THE WORLD, an organization that promotes amongst other the link between sport and the environment, submitted a request to the Environmental Program of the United Nations, in order for the environmental program of the Athens Classic Marathon to be a part of the Climate Neutral Network. After assessing the case, United Nations have accepted the program as the first Greek initiative to join the UNITED NATIONS CLIMATE NEUTRAL NETWORK.
This is a significant recognition, as the innovations of the Marathon’s environmental program have been included amongst 180 international programs that aim to protect the environment and to promote climate neutrality as a tool for climate protection.
The Network was founded in February 2008 by the United Nations Environmental Program and aims to promote climate neutral initiatives both locally and globally and on all social levels. It is based on an interactive website , giving its members the opportunity to present their strategies regarding climate neutrality and providing them with a platform to promote their actions and to inspire other organizations and individuals. It is a network for exchanging information and experiences, making it possible for everyone to access the most effective strategies regarding climate neutrality.
The members of the Network are countries, businesses and organizations which have implemented specific projects and strategies that reduce their impact on the environment and contribute to the prevention of climate change.
Members of the Network include countries such as Norway, Portugal and New Zealand, cities such as Copenhagen, Vancouver and Sidney, businesses like DELL, DEUTCHE BANK, TOYOTA, but also organizations such as the Basel Convention, the 2010 FIFA World Cup, the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.
The acknowledgement of the efforts made by SEGAS and its PARTNERS for a climate friendly Athens Classic Marathon also has symbolic value. The admission to the network coincides with the UN Summit for Climate Change in Copenhagen, but it is also important to note that the next anniversary Marathon will present yet another distinction and acknowledgement which will contribute to the consolidation of its global character in the minds of the athletes, provide awareness amongst the Greek and international athletic community, for which the link between sport and the environment is a growing necessity.
The joint course that was set four years ago to incorporate environmental values into the ATHENS CLASSIC MARATHON, along with the existing sporting and cultural nes, has created its own history and is encouraging us all to promote the connection between sports events and environmental protection in Greece and in other countries.
The contributors to these efforts have committed themselves to establishing joint actions in promoting these programs to social and other partners of the MARATHON. These actions include the creation of a global network of social and athletic events that take measures to protect the environment and the climate, beginning with marathons around the world.
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