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Mariners Recognized With 2017 Green Glove

By Greg Johns / MLB.com

The Mariners' efforts to reduce their impact on the environment has earned the 2017 Green Glove Award. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

The Mariners’ efforts to reduce their impact on the environment has earned the 2017 Green Glove Award. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

SEATTLE — For the first time in franchise history, the Mariners were awarded Major League Baseball’s “Green Glove Award” in recognition of their recycling efforts at Safeco Field in 2017.

The San Francisco Giants had won the award for nine straight years, but the Mariners were recognized Tuesday as the MLB club with the highest diversion rate, meaning the amount of waste material diverted from landfills for recycling.

The Mariners converted 96 percent of waste materials from the ballpark toward recycling efforts this past season, up from 90 percent in 2016.

“We have worked hard over the years to make Safeco Field one of the ‘greenest’ ballparks in pro sports,” said Mariners senior vice president of ballpark operations Trevor Gooby. “With our hospitality partner Centerplate, and our founding sustainability partner BASF, we have been able to significantly reduce our impact on the environment. Thanks to Major League Baseball for recognizing our efforts with this great honor.”

The Mariners have long been one of MLB’s leaders in promoting recycling and energy efficiency. Nearly everything used at Safeco Field is recyclable or compostable, including food service items like plates, cups, straws, bottles and utensils.

Compost and recycling bins have replaced garbage cans on concourses, and cleaning crews separate plastics and compostable waste by hand after each game.


Read the full story here.

Post-game Show

Resource Recycling
By Michelle Lee Guiney

The nine waste sorts to date at Fenway Park in Boston have produced a total 56 percent landfill diversion rate, and one recent effort achieved 76 percent diversion.

The nine waste sorts to date at Fenway Park in Boston have produced a total 56 percent landfill diversion rate, and one recent effort achieved 76 percent diversion.

Each day, the United State generates a little under 1 million tons of waste, according to a report last year from the Environmental Research and Education Foundation (EREF). Based on 2013 waste data, EREF estimated the U.S. recycles 21 percent of its discards, composts 6 percent and sends 9 percent to energy recovery, meaning the country incinerates or buries around 222 million tons of material annually.

Clearly, Americans need fresh pathways to keep materials out of the waste stream. And despite lacking sexy, high-tech appeal, there is one solution that can hit a grand slam when it comes to recovering a high percentage of recyclables: manual sortation at the hundreds of major sporting and entertainment events that take place around the U.S. daily.

Just ask facilities managers at Fenway Park, the historic home of Major League Baseball’s Boston Red Sox. The team has been pushing into exciting territory on the waste issue since the summer of 2016 with its concessions partner Aramark Corporation as well as with Waste Management, the exclusive hauler for the Boston Red Sox, and G Force Waste Sorters. Together, these entities have worked to establish a system that employs sorting staff to separate recoverable materials from trash during stadium cleanup after select games and concerts held at Fenway.

Through the nine sorts that have occurred so far, the collaborators have sorted 31,057 pounds of trash and recovered 17,402 pounds for recycling and composting to yield a 56 percent overall landfill waste diversion rate for the sorted stream. The procedure has become increasingly efficient over time, and the approach can serve as a template for other venues around the country.

Eclipsing 75 percent diversion

To push forward the waste diversion program at Fenway Park, select games and concerts have been chosen over the last year to serve as pilot efforts. These pilot project sorts have allowed stakeholders to learn how to deal with logistical challenges, such as limited sorting space, complicated loading docking access, weather-related issues and coordinating needs when multiple events occur at the park simultaneously.

Not surprisingly, improvements have been implemented along the way, and one recent sort achieved a 76 percent landfill diversion rate for materials generated by event attendees. Jonathan Lister, senior director of Fenway Park Facilities Management and board member for G Force Waste Sorters, encapsulates the enthusiasm of all partners involved: “This is an All-Star team and post-game waste sorting is the MVP.”

How exactly does the operation unfold on days when the waste-sort team is deployed?

After the mass exodus from Fenway of roughly 40,000 fans, a massive cleanup project ensues. Aramark heads the army of permanent and temporary staff who work through the night to restore the venue to a clean condition. On the waste front, loads of collected trash are weighed and then dumped in a designated sorting area managed by G Force Waste Sorters.

Four to six sorters are assigned to six-foot-long tables and have multiple carts behind them for separating materials. Once carts are filled, sorters log the weight and material type of each cart and then proceed to the loading dock to empty the cart into the correct compactor. Around 20 sorters repeat this procedure throughout the evening, filling hundreds of carts until all trash is sorted. Clearly, it’s a tedious effort, but it has helped highlight just how much work it takes to ensure proper diversion of materials within a large event setting. And the process has the potential for big payoffs.

Venues like Fenway can easily accumulate 10 tons of trash alone in just a few hours. A rough calculation by G Force Waste Sorters has determined that if all 30 Major League Baseball stadiums across the country were able to divert 76 percent of their fan-generated waste for all their games, more than 18,000 tons of recyclable and organic material would be recovered annually.

Read the full story here.

Will LED Lighting Affect the Game of Baseball?

By Mark Urycki

2017.06.19-NewsFeed-Baseball Lights-IMAGE

The Cleveland Indians next home game is Friday when they host the Minnesota Twins.   It’s a night game, like most of the games in Major League Baseball.

The Indians won the very first American League night game in 1939 in Philadelphia.  The first of any Major League Baseball game played under lights occurred down state in Cincinnati four years earlier.

Now as stadiums change their lighting systems statisticians will be watching to see if the game changes.

Probably the very first of any baseball game played under lights involved two amateur teams in Massachusetts in 1880. Thanks to Cleveland inventor Charles Brush they had arc lamps available.

The professional teams eventually settled on metal halide lamps and for the last 50 years that’s been the standard.  But this year Progressive Field became one of a dozen Major League parks to use lower-wattage LED lighting.

The installation was dome by Ephesus Lighting, a subsidiary of Cleveland’s Eaton Corporation.  Ephesus president Mike Lorenz says the league is backing the change.

“There’s an organization called the Green Sports Alliance it was founded less than 10 years ago. And their whole vision is to encourage teams to reduce their carbon footprint in a variety of ways. And obviously lighting is a major component of that.”

Lorenz figures the LED’s at Progressive Field will reduce the club’s power consumption by 50%.  And because the LED’s can be quickly turned on and off, savings may be more than that.  Indoor arenas and stadiums that are air-conditioned may save the most money because LED’s give off much less heat.

How much light and what color they have is largely up to the teams.  Lorenz says each lamp is made up of many diodes that can be tuned to a specific color temperature,

“We try to create as consistent a light as we can so that during the transition from late afternoon to early evening to evening the field of play is as consistent as it can be for the players and the fans and the broadcasting.”

If you’ve looked into an LED flashlight you know it can be painful.   Lorenz says they work to avoid problems for players that need to look up into the lights to catch a ball.

“For players, what they are concerned about is unintended light or glare zones. And because we can be very precise in how we direct the light we can reduce the number of player glare zones.  Obviously these lights are very bright and if you look straight at it it’s going to be intense.  Our goal is try to mimize those areas where players are forced to look up at those lights”

Lorenz says his company has installed LED’s in hundreds of venues and have heard no complaints from players.  But how will it affect batters?

Read the full story here.