By Carly Carroll
It’s a big week in sports. Folks are getting ready for the big game, and if you’re a hockey fan, there’s a lot of excitement out on the ice. So this week we’re focusing in on the ways that sports teams, stadiums and fans can reduce their environmental impact and take action on climate.
The great news is that many sports teams and leagues have already scored some big environmental goals. Read on to learn about a few of the big steps they’ve taken on the environment.
- The Philadelphia Eagles run an efficient offense under Chip Kelly and have started to bring efficiency to their cleaning strategy as well. They are using greener cleaning products that don’t contain chemicals that can harm the environment.
- The National Hockey League is on a power play on a number of environmental initiatives, including purchasing wind energy credits to offset all of its electricity usage for its headquarters in New York City.
- Consol Energy Center, home of the Pittsburgh Penguins, is the first NHL arena to be LEED Gold Certified – the second highest level of certification.
- Every year, the National Basketball Association hosts NBA Green Week where it highlights what teams and players are doing to take action for a cleaner environment.
- The Boston Red Sox recently wrapped up a new “green monster” in Fenway Park – a five-year plan that included the installation of enough solar panels to provide 37% of their energy.
- While Corey Kluber fanned a lot of batters in 2014 en route to his AL Cy Young, the Cleveland Indians fanned their way to clean energy, becoming the first MLB team to install a wind turbine.
- The Miami Marlins are sliding into 2015 with a groundbreaking reduction in water use. New plumbing fixtures and water use plans will reduce their use by an estimated 52%, while changes to their landscape design mean a 60% reduction in water for irrigation.
- About 65% of the waste generated at PNC Park, home of the Pittsburgh Pirates, gets recycled. According to the Pirates, if the plastic bottles they’ve recycled were laid flat end to end, they would stretch from PNC Park to Yankee Stadium and back again.
- The St. Louis Cardinals are knocking it out of the park when it comes to reducing wasted food. Since 2008, they’ve delivered $159,462 of safe, healthy leftover food to those who need a good meal.
- The Seattle Mariners took a big step adding Robinson Cano to their lineup in 2014. The club has also taken big steps to enhance their energy efficiency and reduce water use. They’ve saved more than $1.75 million in electricity, gas, water and sewer bills since 2006.
- The Washington Nationals are leading the league on green building. Nationals Park was the first major professional stadium to become LEED Silver Certified.
Many teams, leagues and stadiums are involved with programs here at EPA like the Food Recovery Challenge and the Green Power Partnership. Check out our Green Sports website to learn more.
About the Author: Carly Carroll has worked in public engagement and environmental education for 8 years. She enjoys connecting the sports world with EPA and teaching kids about nature. She graduated from NC State University with a Masters in Science Education, but is a die-hard Tar Heel fan.