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On December 13, Taichung City held a half-marathon and attracted over 14 thousand participants, but the excessive plastic cups provided for drinks and snacks raised controversy.

UDN reports, according to marathon regulations, the organizer should set up one water station at every five kilometers. This results in one runner consuming 10 to 15 disposable cups throughout the race. Two to three million cups are disposed among the over 100 marathons held in Taiwan each year.

There are also runners that suggest the organizers to recycle the souvenir towels and T-shirts after they finish the race, or to reduce their registration fee if the runners choose not to keep the souvenirs.

China Times reports, the metropolitan park in Sanchung, New Taipei City, has been chosen as race venues multiple times in recent years. However, a lot of garbage is usually left behind, destroying the landscape and leading to discontent in the neighborhood. For example, the 2015 Doraemon Run in November attracted more than 14 thousand runners, but garbage was left all over the park after the event.

In response, Lin Hung-zheng, vice director of High Riverbank Construction Management Office, says that in the future event organizers will be requested to pay a NT$ 10,000 (approximately US$ 305) security deposit before the event and have to recover the site within six hours after the event. If the organizers fail to clean up the site in time, the government will use the security deposit to hire cleaning agencies and the organizers will be suspended from using the site for at least two to six months. The new regulation expects to be announced and implemented next year.

This May, a marathon held in Orchid Island aimed not to leave any garbage behind. UDN reports, the organizers did not provide water; instead, they asked the runners to bring their own cups and carry one kilogram of garbage with them upon leaving the island after the marathon.

Translated by June
Edited by Olivia Yang