Taipei Marathon to record carbon footprint as part of 2050 net zero goal

The Taipei Marathon will have carbon footprint verification conducted for the first time ever on the race this year as part of efforts to reduce carbon emissions in order to achieve net zero emissions by 2050, a top city official said Friday.

The organizers of the 2021 Taipei Marathon, which will be held this Sunday, have invited the United Kingdom's national standards body British Standards Institute (BSI) to record the event's carbon emissions which will then be used as a reference for efforts to reduce the event's emissions by 3 percent every year until net zero can be reached in 2050, Taipei Deputy Mayor Tsai Ping-kun (???) said at a press conference.

The 2050 net zero emissions is a target set by a number of organizations and major economies around the globe to find a balance between the amount of greenhouse gas produced and the amount removed from the atmosphere.

"The 2050 net zero carbon emission should not be all talk but should be put into action, so such a big sporting event should consider how its carbon emissions can be reduced every year. I think this is an important issue that connects us to global society," Tsai said.

Li Tzai-li (???), commissioner of Taipei's Department of Sports, said the 2050 target was not only for the Taipei Marathon but also for Taipei as a whole.

"We hope that whenever sports events are conducted, people can also take time to understand the importance of conservation and environmentalism," Li said.

Actions that will be taken at the race to reduce plastic usage and carbon including the use of recyclable and naturally decomposable materials on the packaging of the race singlets that runners will wear, and the use of non-plastic paper cups at the water and supply stations, Taipei Marathon said in a statement.

Other ways to help conserve the environment are the use of recycled materials for the trophies, electronic finish certificates, and the use of electric transport motorcycles instead of traditional gasoline-powered motorcycles, Taipei Marathon said.

In addition, financial investment holding company Fubon Financial Holdings, a major sponsor of the Taipei Marathon, expects to plant 100,000 trees across Taiwan within the next five years, Taipei Marathon said.

This year's Taipei Marathon will feature 12 elite international athletes, Tsai said, adding that they have all finished 14 days of quarantine and seven days of self-health management.

The 12 international athletes are part of around 26,000 competitors, of which 8,000 are taking part in the full marathon and 18,000 in the half marathon, Tsai said, adding that these will also include 934 international residents living in Taiwan from 59 countries.

The Taipei Marathon has been held annually in Taiwan since 2001, with Kenyan runners typically dominating the race each year.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel