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Amanda Hassall
Six Degrees Ltd (PR for Blue Planet Run)
Tel: +44 (0)1628 480280/+44 (0)7855 359889
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Hilary Swank and the Dow Chemical Company lend support for first-ever around-the-world non-stop relay to raise funds and global awareness for safe drinking water projects

New York (June 1, 2007) – Two-time Academy Award-winning actress Hilary Swank today hosts the official kick-off for the inaugural Blue Planet Run at the United Nations. The non-profit Blue Planet Run Foundation is putting on the Run, made possible by the support of The Dow Chemical Company, to raise funds and awareness about the lack of safe drinking water in impoverished communities around the globe.

The 2007 Blue Planet Run will circumnavigate the earth’s Northern Hemisphere, passing through 16 countries in 95 days, including Ireland and the UK. Events in cities and towns along the route will mark the Run’s arrival, educate local residents about the water crisis and inspire action. The Run concludes in New York on September 4.

“Lack of safe drinking water is a problem that affects the health and prosperity of entire communities and even nations, but there is hope,” said Jin Zidell, founder and chairman of The Blue Planet Run Foundation. “The only elements needed to solve this problem are awareness and surprisingly little money - $30 is all that is needed to give one person access to clean water for their life.”

More than one billion people are without access to safe drinking water, according to the Water Supply and Sanitation Council. Nearly 2.2 million people, most of them children, die each year due to diseases related to unsafe drinking water, inadequate sanitation and poor hygiene. Water-related illnesses are the single greatest cause of human sickness and death worldwide.

The Blue Planet Run Foundation provides practical solutions in rural communities that lack access to clean water. The Foundation has provided funding to water projects in 13 countries that have delivered safe drinking water to 100,000 people. Through the Peer Water Exchange, BPRF’s breakthrough web-based system that taps a worldwide network of water experts to optimise project-planning and funding decisions, 100 percent of individual donations made to BPRF are contributed directly to sustainable water projects in the rural developing world.

“Most of us will never have to worry about access to clean water, but it is a life and death struggle for many people around the world.” said Hilary Swank. “The Blue Planet Run is remarkable because of its unique approach to raising awareness and funds, and I think it is great that companies like Dow are stepping up to help solve this global crisis.”

Information on the Run as it passes through Ireland and the UK:
* The Blue Planet Run arrives in Ireland on Monday 4 June at Shannon Airport and travels across the country to Dublin.

* It arrives in the UK at Holyhead on June 5. From here it passes through several towns and cities, before arriving for the focal exchange event in Trafalgar Square on June 7 (09:00).

* The Run will travel towards Dover, before crossing the Channel and arriving in France, Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, Poland, Belarus, Russia, Mongolia, China, Japan, Canada and the US - finishing in New York on September 4.

* The team of 20 ‘citizen athletes’ represents 13 countries and ranges in age from 23 to 60. Each team member will run a 10-mile leg daily, with one day off every five days.

* Paul Rogan, a 37-year-old father of four from Scotland, is the only British runner. Paul will complete the equivalent of more than 29 marathons along the 15,200 mile route (an estimated 26.7 million strides).

Photographs and b-roll of the opening ceremony are available to members of the press.

To learn more about The Blue Planet Run, visit: Visitors to the site can sign up to be official Messengers of the 2007 run. Messengers can earn commemorative items, join the run, and even win a trip to the finish line celebrations.

About the Blue Planet Run Foundation
Blue Planet Run Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)3 organization dedicated to raising global awareness about the need for safe drinking water and funding working solutions today for the billion people living without water. The U.S.-based foundation funds nongovernmental organizations worldwide and promotes operational sustainability. The foundation’s signature awareness and fund-raising event is the Blue Planet Run, the first-ever around-the-world relay.

For more information about the Blue Planet Run Foundation, or to make a donation, please visit Blue Planet Run is a registered trademark of the Blue Planet Run Foundation.

About Dow
Dow is a diversified chemical company that harnesses the power of innovation, science and technology to constantly improve what is essential to human progress. The Company offers a broad range of products and services to customers in more than 175 countries, helping them to provide everything from fresh water, food and pharmaceuticals to paints, packaging and personal care products. Built on a commitment to its principles of sustainability, Dow has annual sales of $49 billion and employs 43,000 people worldwide. References to "Dow" or the "Company" mean The Dow Chemical Company and its consolidated subsidiaries unless otherwise expressly noted.

More information about Dow can be found at

Dow’s Sponsorship of the 2007 Blue Planet Run
As presenting sponsor of the 2007 Blue Planet Run®, The Dow Chemical Company is committed to addressing global environmental sustainability issues. Dow’s partnership with the 2007 Blue Planet Run® aligns with the company’s 2015 Sustainability Goals and its commitment to helping solve some of the world’s most pressing challenges. With science, R&D, new products and the “the human element,” Dow pledges to contribute to solutions for some of the most serious problems faced by the most vulnerable members of the larger human family: affordable and adequate food supply; decent housing; improved personal health and safety; and sustainable water supplies.

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