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Leading the Field

GEO Foundation

SCOTTSDALE, Arizona. (Nov, 28, 2017) – The 2017 Waste Management Phoenix Open achieved another first in golf sustainability, becoming the first tournament in the world to attain “GEO Certified® Tournament” status from Scotland-based GEO Foundation (GEO).

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Photo credit: GEO Foundation

To become a “GEO Certified® Tournament” the Waste Management Phoenix Open, the largest attended tournament on the PGA Tour, followed principles set out in the newly released “Voluntary Sustainable Golf Tournament Standard” and achieved outstanding results in six categories: Planning, Site Protection, Procurement, Resource Management, Access and Equity, and Community Legacy. Sustainability highlights from the tournament include:

  • 100% landfill diversion through recycling, composting, donation, reuse and waste-to-energy.
  • 63.3 million gallons of water restored to the Colorado River Basin and Verde River through the Waste Management Phoenix Open Water Campaign with Bonneville Environmental Foundation.
  • 720 MtCO2e of carbon offsets with a strong socio-economic focus purchased, to cover more than double the emissions from tournament operations, player travel and volunteer travel.
  • Zero Waste Stations used to engage attendees, educating and encouraging involvement in sustainability.
  • An annual Waste Management Phoenix Open Sustainability Report with detailed metrics and program explanations.
  • A venue Environmental Management Plan and commitment to become a fully GEO Certified® golf facility.
  • Protection of ecologically sensitive areas and minimized impact of temporary structures and heavy machinery through a Site Protection Plan.
  • Over $10.1 million raised and awarded to local charities through The Thunderbirds and $100,000 donated to environmental organizations from Green Out Day.
  • Local youth engagement and free admission for local police, firefighters, active and retired military personnel.
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Photo credit: GEO Foundation

The accolade is the culmination of many years of commitment, planning and delivery on the part of Waste Management, the tournament host The Thunderbirds and other tournament sponsors, stakeholders, and vendors to ensure a comprehensive sustainability effort covering all aspects of the tournament.  Sustainability efforts of the tournament have been validated through in-depth third-party verification, including the Council for Responsible Sport, UL and GEO.

Read the full story here.

Volta Enters Ten-Year Agreement with Chicago’s United Center to Bring Free EV Charging to Largest Arena in the United States

Volta

 

SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Volta Charging, the leader in free electric vehicle charging, today announced a ten-year agreement to deploy EV charging stations near the South and East entrances of the United Center in Chicago, launching in October 2017.

Through Volta’s nationwide network of electric vehicle charging stations, the largest indoor arena in the U.S. and home of the Chicago Blackhawks and Chicago Bulls, will offer visitors free charging facilities, supporting the center’s mission to reduce its environmental impact.

“Volta is thrilled to become United Center’s free EV charging provider. These stations will channel sponsorships into a force for good and show millions of fans that Chicago is driving forward into its electric future,” said Scott Mercer, CEO of Volta Charging.

Four open-access universal charging stations will be installed, operated and maintained at no cost to the center or its patrons through Volta’s sponsored network model. The stations will be equipped with digital-hybrid displays and placed in prime locations near venue entrances to ensure sponsor messages reach audiences, while facilitating easy access for drivers.

Earlier this year, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel signed an executive order committing to the guidelines put forth in the Paris climate agreement, pledging to reduce 26-28% greenhouse gas by 2025. As city departments find ways to reduce emissions, United Center is showing its support and raising awareness about its own commitment to sustainability through its partnership with Volta.

“With over 2.5 million visitors annually, we are excited to be partnering with Volta to bring its stations to our arena and provide visitors with a convenient and easy way to charge their vehicles,” said Joe Myra, who is the VP of Business Affairs, United Center. “Volta’s model aligns perfectly with our plan to work towards sustainability and enables our patrons to take a personal stake in a viable future.”

Since its founding 2010, Volta has delivered over 15 million electric miles and saved 136,000 gallons of gas, while offsetting 6.6 million pounds of CO2. It creates four times the usage per-port of the average charging network.

Read the full release here.

United Announce $25 million in Green Financing Through D.C. PACE

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Today, D.C. United, Mayor Muriel Bowser and the Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) announced the closing of a $25 million private clean energy financing deal for installation of state-of-the-art energy and water efficiency measures, an 884 KW solar array, and stormwater retention systems on Audi Field, United’s new soccer-specific stadium with capacity for 20,000 people opening next year. These measures are funded through DOEE’s Property Assessed Clean Energy (D.C. PACE) program, D.C.’s innovative green financing solution which operates through a public-private-partnership, allowing local lenders to fund environmentally beneficial projects at no cost to taxpayers. This innovative tool helps spur economic development while providing substantial environmental benefits that benefit the entire city. This deal, done through a partnership with locally-based EagleBank, marks the nation’s largest single PACE note issued to-date, and the first issued for a stadium project.

“D.C. United are committed to building an environmentally responsible stadium, in addition to providing a world class soccer venue,” Jason Levien, United managing general partner, said. “DC PACE financing is allowing this project to achieve LEED Gold certification from the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) and to save about $125,000 annually on utility bills through LED lighting on the field and a host of other green measures throughout the site. As the first stadium to use PACE financing, we are excited to make Audi Field a national leader in environmental performance and green community benefits.”

The hallmark of the deal is the planned installation of 884KW of building-integrated solar panels installed on the stadium’s canopy and throughout the site. This system, to be developed by D.C.-based New Columbia Solar, will provide roughly one million kilowatt hours of solar power annually, enough to offset almost a third of the stadium’s projected electricity usage. PACE will also fund high-efficiency heating and cooling systems, LED field lighting, additional building insulation, low-flow water fixtures, a green roof, and stormwater management measures that meet the District’s highest standards for protecting the Anacostia River.

“We know that cities throughout the U.S. will be leading the fight against climate change, and this deal is an example of how Washington, D.C. can think globally while acting locally,” Mayor Bowser said. “This deal will not only allow us to green Audi Field, it will also create new opportunities for local businesses and high-quality green jobs for D.C. residents.”

In total, the stadium’s PACE-funded measures will result in a 25 percent reduction in energy use and will reduce emissions by 820 metric tons of CO2 annually – roughly equivalent to taking 173 cars off the road. These reductions are critical components of Washington, DC’s ongoing efforts to achieve the Sustainable DC and Clean Energy DC goals, which call for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent, increasing the use of renewable energy to 50 percent of the District’s energy supply, and reducing energy use by 50 percent by 2032.  In addition, through green roofs, bioretention areas, and infiltration basins, the site will provide storage for more than 55,000 cubic feet of stormwater onsite.

“The solar energy and green features of Audi Field prove what’s smart for the environment can be good for local business, too,” said Bracken Hendricks, CEO of Urban Ingenuity, Program Administrator for DC PACE. “With this project, D.C. United, EagleBank, DOEE, and New Columbia Solar demonstrate how green measures save money, boost local economic development, and create good green jobs for District workers, all without costing D.C. government a cent. These voluntary measures create community benefits on day one, and are repaid through savings over time. This project is good government and good for the planet, pure and simple.”

About Audi Field

Audi Field will be the home for D.C. United, the most decorated franchise in U.S. soccer history and the most championed professional team in the District of Columbia. Opening in 2018, it will also host a variety of other sporting and cultural events, community activities, and concerts. The state-of-the-art urban facility has a capacity of 20,000 fans and will feature 31 luxury suites, a bike valet, and 500,000 total square feet of mixed-use retail and residential space on site, making it a 365-day destination for fans and D.C. residents alike.

DC PACE INFO

AUDI FIELD PROJECT OVERVIEW

One of the founding clubs of Major League Soccer in 1996, D.C. United are the most decorated team in the United States, with 13 domestic and international trophies. The Black-and-Red have won the MLS Cup four times (1996, 1997, 1999 and 2004), the Supporters’ Shield four times (1997, 1999, 2006 and 2007) and the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup three times (1996, 2008 and 2013).  

—   www.dcunited.com   —

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