Gone Postal: Greenworx at Crankworx
With a huge event like Crankworx it’s really easy to get caught up in the hype and extravagance of the events. While cruising the vendor tents looking for the latest and greatest gadgets peddled by vendors it’s also pretty easy to get jaded on how consumer and experience based our economy is, especially when you can see the waste generated by it.
Thankfully, event organizers at Crankworx understand the mountains we play in are also the mountains whose environment we need to care for, preserve, and protect. And while waste generated from a large-scale event like Crankworx is likely, I was stoked to learn of a few green-initiatives working under the radar of this week’s festival.
Crankworx and Whistler Blackcomb have teamed up with some amazing sponsors to help meet a stringent criteria of their impressive Zero Waste goals. And while working to reduce waste, repurpose materials, and recycle disposables is significantly less glamorous than the big screens, announcers, and DJ’s – its impact reaches much further.
At least a couple organizations partnered with this year’s rendition of Crankworx have at their focus green business solutions. Bullfrog Power, a Canadian company specializing in providing 100% renewable energy solutions to homes, business, and transportation are making their mark in helping reduce the Crankworx carbon footprint.
Suha Jethalal of Bullfrog Power explains, “Bullfrogpowering Crankworx 2012 with 100% renewable energy helps to reduce the event’s environmental impact and increase awareness of renewable energy in Canada.”
Another green solution provider partnered with Crankworx is the Vancouver based deBrand Services. Concerned not only with the front end of marketing and brand management, deBrand also asks questions about how to responsibly close down a marketing campaign. Where do all the used banners end up? Do the billboards, banners, and other branded materials simply end up in the trash or, can they somehow be repurposed? When Crankworx leaves town do all of the banners simply end up as waste in a landfill?
To help Whistler Blackcomb achieve its ambitious Zero Waste goals, Crankworx and deBrand Services have teamed up to recycle and repurpose all the branded event materials you’re seeing throughout the village this week. It’s a great initiative that saw success during the 2010 Winter Olympics and has worked well for eco-conscious brands like LuLuLemon.
“Events as large as Crankworx have the potential to create a lot of waste, but there are options out there to mitigate that waste,” comments Drew DePanicis, Manager of Environment and Innovation at deBrand. “debrand’s goal is to help Crankworx divert all their event materials either through repurposing or recycling. It’s tough to say exactly where and how much of each material will be able to be repurposed or recycled, but when you take a creative approach to waste management and find the value in the materials themselves, there are always opportunities available.”
Balancing big festivals with environmental consciousness is a trend I hope does not go away soon. But the benefits of and responsibility for environmental care and concern is not bore solely by Crankworx, Whistler Blackcomb, or any other organization; it’s a community thing. And that’s part of what I love about Whistler – people are generally thoughtful and intentional about their interactions with the environment. Each of us can do our part by reducing our consumption, reusing and repurposing our old stuff (for example: resole your shoes instead of buying new ones), and by recycling what can’t be reused.
Green solutions in life and living – be they personal, business, or communal – are the right the choices. Let’s keep Whistler awesome by continuing to live like we mean it. Good on ya Crankworx for working through the issue!