In a year of 365 days, as is the case with 2023, Earth’s renewable resources were depleted by humanity on day 214. Time cannot be turned back, as nature doesn’t have a reverse button. In response to this challenge, Oltenia Marathon, an event by CEZ Romania, has created ‘Athletes for Nature’ a platform dedicated to raising awareness about the actions we, as athletes and nature lovers, should consider.
The date of August 2nd, recognized internationally as Earth Overshoot Day, aims to raise the alarm about the effects that all of us can have on the environment and nature in the future.
For CEZ Romania, August 2nd, the day when humanity’s demand for Earth’s natural resources in the year 2023 exceeds the planet’s capacity to regenerate, is day zero. It marks the establishment of the “Athletes for Nature” community, a platform that seeks to bring together the most responsible sports enthusiasts. CEZ Romania invites the public to turn back time for nature and join the community by signing a commitment to Earth, available here.
Out of care for nature and a passion for sports, Larisa Iordache, the well-known Olympic, World, and European medal-winning gymnast, Radu Restivan, athlete and founder of 321sport #RunningCulture, along with Ondrej Safar, CEO of CEZ Romania, marked this moment with a unique action: they ran one kilometer backwards, as a symbol that time cannot be turned back, but also to convey that in order to prolong the life of the planet, we must consider actions to protect it.
The ‘Race for Earth’ can be followed here and aims to inspire the audience to adopt responsible behavior during sports training: using environmentally friendly means of transportation, choosing quality equipment that can be used in the long term, recycling used sports gear and many other such habits.
“We are consuming resources faster than the planet can regenerate them. This actively contributes to significant consequences on environmental sustainability, but it also compels us to be mindful of the need for increased conservation efforts. As responsible athletes, we commit to turning back time for nature through sustainable choices, especially when it comes to sports,” stated Ondrej Safar, CEO of CEZ Romania.
CEZ Romania’s initiative is supported by the association Wild Sport, one of the most recognized local organizations in Vâlcea, which advocates for sports in nature:
“Protecting nature should be a way of life for each of us, not just a slogan. We have realized that we need to change our lifestyle and habits. It hasn’t been difficult at all. Recycling waste, taking care of animals and plants, and not wasting water and energy are some simple actions that are very easy to accomplish. Cycling brings people closer to nature, challenges them to be attentive to its signals, and makes them aware of ecological disasters caused by wasteful behaviors. In sports and nature, every step counts, so we gladly accept the challenge of not just being athletes but athletes for nature. We encourage everyone around us to join our mission,” states Cristi Nițu, from Wild Sport Association.
The first to turn back time for nature are the three protagonists of the “Race for Earth” and the first members of the “Athletes for Nature” community. Anyone can contribute to moving the Earth Overshoot Day to December 31st! On www.maratonulolteniei.ro, those interested can join the community by signing a commitment to nature, and thus, they will be able to be an example and support existing solutions to protect the environment and preserve the planet’s resources.
1 with sports, 1 with nature – the philosophy of responsibility for the 11th edition of the Oltenia Marathon.
This year, the Oltenia Marathon will take place from August 26th to August 27th, in Zăvoi Park, Râmnicu Vâlcea. Registrations for #MO2023 are open on www.maratonulolteniei.ro, for the already established competition events:
MTB races: 22 km and 33 km;
Trail Run races: 12 km and 22 km.
Additionally, there will be dedicated running races for children in Zăvoi Park on August 27th.