Super Bowl XLVIII promises to be the greenest Super Bowl to date, diverting more waste, conserving more water and saving more energy than its predecessors. Here’s what will make the difference:
MetLife Stadium: The venue itself for this year’s showdown has a reputation for sustainable practices. Named the “Greenest Stadium” in the National Football League (NFL) by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), MetLife Stadium was constructed from recycled steel and concrete, boasts aggressive composting and recycling programs, and employs multiple energy-saving strategies. The stadium even installed a solar ring that produces enough energy to power 34 average residential homes per year.
Concessions: MetLife Stadium and its food service partner Delaware North Companies Sportservice recently earned the title of first Certified Green Restaurant stadium from the Green Restaurant Association by achieving 61 environmental measures. These include converting all waste kitchen oil to biodiesel fuel; composting all kitchen scraps; recycling cardboard, plastic, glass, aluminum and paper; using Energy Star equipment; and eliminating all polystyrene foam containers.
Green power: For every megawatt used at the Super Bowl, the Denver Broncos’ and Seattle Seahawks’ hotels, and “Super Bowl Boulevard” in Midtown Manhattan, Public Service Enterprise Group will purchase one renewable energy certificate. The goal is to offset the pollution created in producing the extra power needed to host the Super Bowl by directing revenue to clean-power sources. Additionally, biodiesel will fuel outdoor generators.
Waste reduction: The NFL hopes to completely remove food from the waste stream of this year’s Super Bowl. Unused food will be donated to local soup kitchens, shelters and churches; the rest will be composted. Also, after the game, the league will donate the 5 to 7 miles of fabric used to decorate local airports, transportation hubs and the stadium itself to a vendor that plans to recycle it into tote bags, wallets and even clothing.
Trees: Since May, the NFL — along with the Super Bowl Host Committee, corporate sponsor Verizon, the New Jersey Tree Foundation, the New York Restoration Project and other local organizations — has planted 27,000 trees to help reforest areas damaged by Superstorm Sandy. In fact, in one day alone, volunteers planted 20,000 trees at Rockaway Park!
E-waste recycling: Partnering with the Super Bowl Host Committee and Verizon as well as Broadway Green Alliance, the NFL has hosted several e-waste recycling events in recent months throughout New York and New Jersey to collect and safely recycle electronic waste. Verizon also plans to restore used cellphones and donate them to shelters in New York and New Jersey as part of its HopeLine program, which supports victims of domestic violence.
Want to do your part? Host a green Super Bowl party