Littering during Earth Day run

To add to Natgeo’s woes, the above picture went “viral,” that is according to Interaksyon.

The picture was posted in Francis Xavier Pasion’s Facebook, with the following caption:

Early this morning, I ran my first marathon. It is dubbed as the NATGEO EARTH DAY RUN. I ran for 3 reasons: 1. I liked the shirt (i would have settled for the 3k, but I liked the 5k gray shirt so i would not mind running an additional 3k); 2. I had no taping yesterday; 3. I wanna lose some calories. I did not run to save the earth. That was clear. I was just wondering why the others ran? I was so amused to see most runners scatter their used paper cups and bottled waters on the street. Oh, Mother Earth would be very proud of them…and the organizers. I hope the organizers did not place plastic bottled waters or paper cups in the various stops of the race. I hope they reiterated upon registration that the runner must bring his/her own container and that water fonts will be stationed instead. That could have saved them some money, and yes, some trees. Next time, let us be clear about our intentions in initiating these events. I may have ran for the wrong reasons, but I certainly did not throw away that paper cup on the street. Happy Earth Day Everyone, whatever that means to you.

Not to defend Natgeo in this, but I honestly don’t see the point of Francis’s rant. There are people who are tasked to clean up the paper cups, so the net result is that it would have all ended up in the garbage bin. If the runner tosses the cup inside the garbage bin, he is not actually saving Mother Earth; he is just making the job easier for the guy collecting the cups. The fact that the organizers used paper cups is a good thing; other organizers who had claimed to be environment-conscious were using plastic cups!

Now if only runners would properly dispose of their empty energy gel sachets . . .

Oh and by the way, dear Francis, I may be nit-picking but a marathon is 42 kilometers. A 5k run is hardly a marathon.

What do you think? Is it so wrong for runners to toss their empty cups onto the street? I’d love to hear your comments.

Update: A satirical blog post seems to be gaining speed.  It cites a supposed “apology” by Juardencio Turcuatico, Territory Director for Fox International Channels.  It’s a funny read, and I bet the blog author must be doing a “LMFAO” over the reactions of various runners.  Good job,  @SoWhatsNews!   I wonder though how the folks over at Fox International are taking this.


8 thoughts on “Littering during Earth Day run

  1. For this particular event and the cause it claims to advocate, it’s hardly about just tossing empty cups in the street.

    I’d probably accept that indiscriminate throwing of paper cups is a well-established (albeit messy) tradition among runners. What probably made the photo viral is the fact that the event was supposed to promote environmental awareness and Nat Geo did absolutely nothing to elevate the event into something much more than any other running event. It’s hard not to see the irony in that, regardless of whether there’s someone cleaning up afterwards or not.

    So what made the event specifically “Earth Day”-ish? I’d like to know the answer to that, because it certainly looks like they only wrote “Earth Day” on it. (Much like how SM promotes itself as “Earth friendly”, whatever that means.)

    And actually, Francis’ tone wasn’t ranting. I see a hint of sarcasm and scorn, but I think he was just amused overall.

    • There was nothing “Earth Day”-ish about the event, save perhaps for the fact that they used paper cups instead of plastic. But aside from that, if you pulled a runner out and asked about how the run made him/her more environmentally-aware, I suppose you will be greeted with a blank stare.

  2. @Sir Mon, I agree with your points above. Francis’ post was senseless – there are assigned people who will clean the cups. I am also guessing that it was the first time Francis ran a race – him not knowing what a marathon is. Hence, the way he reacted when he saw paper cups all over. If he had been running races regularly, he would know that sights like the one he posted is “normal”.

  3. LMFAO might be an overstatement Sir, as LOL too. L lang siguro for laughing 🙂

    As always, there are two sides to a story. The organizers might have not provided enough trash bins, but it is still not ok to just throw the cups & bottles anywhere. Unless you’re in the Philippines I guess. 🙂

    Care to comment on my blog to tell other runners that it’s just satire Sir? 🙂

  4. Hi. Let me keep this simple. Those who belittle runners for throwing cups on the road are NOT runners. Ganito lang yan eh, hindi nyo to mundo so hindi nyo alam ang nangyayari sa run. Only in the Philippines? are you sure? ARE YOU SURE? Please, ang paplastic na ng mga pinoy ngayon. Accusing each other of wrong doings without even looking at themselves first. It’s disheartening.

  5. Tanggapin na lang natin na mahirap din na hindi mo itapon water cups sa side ng street, whether it is paper or plastic, kasi wala naman sila nilagay na grabage bag maybe some distacne away from the hydration table. Kung lalagyan lang sana ng trash bag di madali naman na ilagay doon yong cup di ba.

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