Going Green had the amazing opportunity to meet with Scott McConville, Race Director of Wharf to Wharf Race, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit who’s mission is to promote the health and fitness of the youth of Santa Cruz County. The organization donates over $250,000 annually to various groups.
Scott, tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’ve been a runner all my life, and for the past 10 years, I’ve been producing running events as a Race Director full time.
What is a fun fact about you?
A few years ago, I showed up to set up and produce the Wharf to Wharf Race starting at 2am, then RAN the same event 7 hours later after finishing setup, finishing 89th place running 34:09 (5:41 minutes per mile). Right after I crossed the finish line, I hopped right back into Race Director mode, putting out fires the rest of the day. Events are stressful enough as it is, I will never do that again, lol!
What was your motivation to get into this industry?
I wanted to give back and stay connected to my community in the space where I am most passionate (running).
Why do you think climate change/sustainability is such an important topic today?
Today, big business is operating in many ways with the same mindset we had during the Industrial Revolution. Big corporations are still using technology and personal greed to continue to exploit our planet. However, more and more startups, new products and clean technology are paving the way for a more sustainable future. It is going to be our generations job to undo the destruction from the past 200+ years.
What do you envision your industry looking like 10 years from now?
It is a delicate dance in the running race industry. You want to make your event safe and show your participants a good time… but you also want to do a better job from a sustainability standpoint. I think more and more events will start to figure out that there is a way to blend sustainable initiatives into your event, which will add value & enhance the experience for the runners. Fore example, we are removing 32,000 plastic bottles from our event and replacing it with a reusable aluminum bottle from Pathwater. Not only does this remove plastic bottles for our event, our participants get value added to their experience!
What can the average person do to make a difference?
Our world feels so big, with so many people. All too often this makes people feel their decisions won’t have an impact. This mindset needs to change. Educate yourself and start making small changes with yourself. A great first step is to stop buying single-use plastic water bottles and opt for a refillable bottle likePathwater. At $2-$3 per bottle, this aluminum bottles value is unmatched.What positive changes are you seeing?In communities surrounding us, single-use plastic bags and plastic straws have been banned. In San Francisco, single-use plastic bottles have also been banned. Some people argue there are bigger issues impacting our planet, which is debatable. However, people need to understand that fixing the way our world operates in terms of impacting the environment is going to take time. Instead of mocking small changes, people need to start celebrating change, they need to get inspired by it, and push for more positive impact. Sometimes the best step is simply the next step in changing the world.
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Learn more about Wharf to Wharf at http://www.WharfToWharf.com
Dylan Welch is the CEO and Host of Going Green, a podcast, website, and social media brand that highlights renewable energy, cleantech, and sustainable news.