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Environment Scores Big Win With Zero-Waste Legacy Project at Super Bowl LII

PepsiCo

Environment scores big win with zero-waste legacy project at Super Bowl LII (PRNewsfoto/PepsiCo)

Environment scores big win with zero-waste legacy project at Super Bowl LII (PRNewsfoto/PepsiCo)

PURCHASE, N.Y.Feb. 22, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — The NFL, in partnership with PepsiCo, Aramark, U.S. Bank Stadium, SMG and the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, scored a zero-waste legacy project at Super Bowl LII, with 91 percentii of all trash generated on gameday from 67,612 fans responsibly recovered through composting, recycling and reuse. The landmark project marks the highest diversion rate achieved at U.S. Bank Stadium and at any previous Super Bowl, and aims to serve as the benchmark for future large-scale events.

The results are in following the big game: nearly 63 tons of the 69 tons of gameday waste were recovered through recycling or donation for reuse (62 percent) and composting (29 percent). Recovering waste through composting and recycling reduces waste disposal costs and provides several environmental benefits including reduction of landfill use and reduction of the greenhouse gas generated by the landfill process, gasses which contribute significantly to global warming.

“The zero-waste legacy project is a testament to teamwork, with multiple partners coming together to achieve an ambitious environmental goal,” said Director of the NFL’s Environmental Program JACK GROH. “The NFL is proud that this program was not only successful at Super Bowl LII, but will also serve as a permanent installation at the stadium and leave a lasting impact on the community.”

U.S. Bank Stadium partners, including the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, stadium operator SMG, and Aramark, kicked off the effort to achieve a zero-waste operation in 2017, and were joined by the NFL and PepsiCo in the lead-up to Super Bowl LII.

“SMG is always striving to raise industry standards through our operation at U.S. Bank Stadium and our commitment to sustainability is no different. In our first season, we produced a waste diversion rate of 20 percent. Over the course of our second season our team increased that diversion rate to 91 percent,” says PATRICK TALTY, SMG General Manager at U.S. Bank Stadium. “Developing a successful and long-term zero-waste program has always been our goal. The diversion improvement we have seen to date is rare in the world of facility management and is a testament to the dedication of all of our stadium partners.”

“U.S. Bank Stadium’s journey to the zero-waste threshold has been demanding, and we couldn’t have gotten here without the commitment of our stadium partners,” said MICHAEL VEKICH, chair of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority, owner of U.S. Bank Stadium. “We look forward to sharing our experiences with other facilities who are interested in this important sustainability program.”

Read the full story.

“Waste Not” proves to be a winning formula for Ohio State: BTN LiveBIG

Big Ten Network
By John Tolley

Image Source: Ohio State University. Photo by Kevin Fitzsimons, The Ohio State University

Image Source: Big Ten Network, Ohio State University. Photo by Kevin Fitzsimons, The Ohio State University

Ah, the sights and sounds of a college football game: the roar of cheering fans, the quarterback’s calls, the precision formation of that big brass band, the face paint, the foam fingers, the… garbage.

Yes, of course, for all the fun, live sporting events are a messy affair. At the end of the day, trashcans overflow with nacho trays and discarded programs, the seats and aisles are littered with peanut shells and sticky soda cups and the municipal dump groans under the weight of another heavy load.

But this common scenario could soon be a thing of the past thanks to a nationwide initiative called the GameDay Recycling Challenge. The program pits colleges and universities across the US against each other in an effort to see which school can reduce, recycle or otherwise divert the largest amount of their stadium waste away from landfills.

For the sixth consecutive year, The Ohio State University has led the Big Ten in the competition, diverting the largest single-game amount of waste in 2017 with 94.2 percent of stadium refuse kept out of the dump.

Speaking to the Ohio State news service, Tony Gillund, sustainability manager for Ohio State’s Facilities Operations and Development (FOD), says that the GameDay Challenge is indicative of the Buckeyes’ larger commitment to reducing their ecological footprint.

“We are proud that the efforts of our zero-waste team continue to deliver positive results,” said Gillund. “Sustainability is a focus campus-wide as we work toward our university goals, including achieving zero waste on campus by 2025.”

At Ohio Stadium, a variety of steps, from maximizing compostable and recyclable materials used to installing zero waste stations, have been taken to ensure that the lowest amount of refuse possible is sent to area landfills. During games, 35 area high school students are employed to educate fans about how to properly dispose of their trash. Afterwards, the Ohio State Navy ROTC combs the stands collecting and sorting the detritus.

Read the full story.

Zero Waste at Michigan Stadium

Michigan Athletics

2017 Recap of Waste Diversion at Michigan Stadium

2018.02.14-Michigan Stadium Waste-IMAGE

Photo Source: Michigan Athletics

After joining a University of Michigan sustainability initiative in 2015, U-M Athletics reached the industry standard for zero waste with over a 90 percent diversion rate during the Rutgers game. For the season Michigan averaged a diversion rate of 88.17 percent.

2018.02.14-Michigan Stadium Waste-IMAGE

Image Source: Zero Waste at Michigan State

Game Day Efforts at Michigan Stadium

  • New Signage: In the summer of 2017, the U-M athletic department worked with the Office of Campus Sustainability on campus to create new signage that fit the Planet Blue branding staff and students see all across campus.
  • Compost: Nearly all food and beverage containers were compostable in 2017.
  • Recycling: Fans once again had the option to purchase souvenir concession items that were recyclable along with water bottles and plastic containers.

The new signage was placed on every waste win and on walls or posts throughout the concourse and inside the stadium suites to help educate fans on where to place their waste items.

A complete list of products and which category they fall under can be found here.

The waste totals for each game were based on waste collected inside the stadium gates only. Waste collected outside the stadium did not factor in to the yearly totals.

Where does the waste go?
Bags of waste are collected throughout the game and taken to dumpsters located in the corners of the stadium. On the Sunday mornings following each home game, a cleanup crew comes in and sorts the remaining waste items in the stadium bowl before it is all hauled off to centers for compost, recycling or landfill.

Sunday Morning Clean ups

Cleanup Crew: Over 400 volunteers from Father Gabriel Richard High School meet at Michigan Stadium. The volunteers check in and collect various items such as leafblowers, rakes, brooms and trash bags to clean the stadium bowl. Informational tables are set up on the concourse to educate the volunteers on which items are compostable, recyclable or landfill.

Read the full Photo Recap and Press Release.

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