The staging of sport events occurs over a fixed duration of time, requiring an influx of resources and human involvement. This situation can result in environmental issues such as excess greenhouse gas emissions and waste generation. Furthermore, economic outcomes are not always equally shared amongst local host communities, and unequal access to participation can manifest in unforeseen ways from the event organizer's perspective. Sports organizations are recognizing the potential for operation related negative impacts, yet most efforts to mitigate these adverse outcomes lack theoretical grounding and holistic approaches aligned with principles of sustainability.
USA Triathlon (USAT) is not exempt from the challenges faced in sustainable event management. With 400,000 plus members, USAT has the largest membership of any sport's governing body in the country. Through managing five owned events and sanctioning over 4,300 on an annual basis, the combined potential for a negative footprint is significant. To temper the potential impacts of USAT events, this project focused on an overarching sustainable event strategy to equip management, operations, and race directors with a suite of resources to manage and mitigate the overall sustainability footprint of events toward desired outcomes that adhere to principles of sustainability.
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