MANILA, Philippines — The organizers of the recently held NatGeo Earth Day Run 2012 has issued a formal apology; after a photo showing participants of the race along with scattered paper cups and plastic bottles on the street went viral.
In a press release addressed to Mother Earth, Juardencio Turcuatico, Territory Director for Fox International Channels – Philippines, said that National Geographic was very sorry for the harm and damage that the event may have caused to her and promises that it wouldn’t happen again in the future.
“It was an event to honor you, like a birthday celebration,” said the letter. “But we somehow botched it and instead of making you, Mama Earth, happy, I think, no, I believe that we have made you even sadder. And for that we are very sorry,”
He added, “It was an oversight on our part. We never thought that the runners would be so irresponsible as to throw them away haphazardly,” he added. “We should have known better than to offer them drinks on cups and bottles.”
Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) forecasts confirms Her anger, with even hotter temperatures, specifically in Metro Manila, seen in the coming days.
In our follow-up interview, the organizer admits that it was very embarrassing on their part but was also a hard learning experience. He promised to make up for it on next year’s iteration. “We are planning to change the venue for NatGeo Earth Run 2013. We are still deciding whether to hold it in Smokey Mountain or in Payatas,” revealed Turcuatico. “This way, participants CAN throw the cups and bottles anywhere along the way.” He also mentioned that they would be using biodegradable materials for the cups, bottles and even the singlets.
If the number of registrants for next year’s run becomes lower due to the location, National Geographic might change the venue back to either Bonifacio Global City (BGC) or to SM Mall of Asia, but with one minor change.
“We wont be serving drinks in cups or bottles to the runners anymore. Instead, we would be cooperating with the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) and the Association of Philippine Volunteer Fire Brigades to provide us with fire trucks,” he revealed. Said fire trucks would be stationed along predetermined points in the race and would pump waters to runners who are thirsty and in need of replenishing. Participants just have to raise their hands and open their mouths before passing by the ‘watering stations’ to indicate their need to be replenished.
NATGEO Earth Run 2013 will be open for registration soon.
P.S. Thanks to Stef dela Cruz for giving me the heads-up on this matter. Visit her blog at http://www.stefdelacruz.com/