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It’s International Compost Awareness Week / Watch “The Compost Story” by Kiss the Ground

Have you ever looked at a banana peel and thought, “Is that it?” Does life go on? Could this humble peel serve a greater purpose?

60 billion pounds of food material go to landfill every year, creating methane gas that is poisoning us and destroying our home. Meanwhile, we’re throwing away the building blocks of life. We’re INSANE! JUST STOP IT!! So what’s the solution?

Help regenerate (not degenerate) our land, water, air, and food system AND enter to win our Giveaway worth $2000!!! Click here for The Compost Story website.

Earth Day 2017: Alliance Member Highlights

 

Employees at the Commissioner's Office, MLB Advanced Media and MLB Network volunteered at the New York Cares Spring Day at Lincoln Terrace Park in Brooklyn. (MLB.com)

Employees at the Commissioner’s Office, MLB Advanced Media and MLB Network volunteered at the New York Cares Spring Day at Lincoln Terrace Park in Brooklyn. (MLB.com)

April 22nd marked the 47th Earth Day since its inception in 1970. Green Sports Alliance members celebrated Earth Day–and the weeks before and after–with a variety of sustainability-minded activities engaging their fans, communities, and staff members. Read on to learn more about a handful of our members’ Earth Day activities and accomplishments.

Would you like us to highlight your Earth Day and year-round sustainability news? Drop an email to kelley@greensportsalliance.org with details.

11th Hour Racing
As Vestas 11th Hour Racing crossed the Atlantic, skipper Charlie Enright and team director Mark Towill reflected on Earth Day noting, “We’re about to sail around an ice gate, and climate change is real, the ice gates of today are different to how they were many moons ago. Unless we can incite change we’re not going to see a change in action and a change in culture.” Click here to read more.

Arizona Diamondbacks
The team encouraged everyone to “go green” during their Earth Day weekend matchup against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The D-backs featured fan engagement and educational activities and reusable water bottle giveaways. Click here to read more.

Baltimore Ravens
In line with GamePlanEarth, a season-long environmental initiative established and led by the Ravens to help make Baltimore a more sustainable city, the Ravens and M&T Bank helped revitalize multiple neighborhoods in Baltimore. Approximately 100 volunteers comprised of staff from both the Ravens and M&T Bank split up and spent their day under the guidance of local organizations whose missions support environmental efforts that better the quality of life in Maryland, including the Parks & People Foundation, Waterfront Partnership and Blue Water Baltimore. Click here to read more.

Boston Red Sox, Fenway Park, Aramark & Waste Management
Waste Management in partnership with the Boston Red Sox and Aramark, celebrated Earth Day 2017 a bit early with a post-game waste sort event at Fenway Park in Boston. The event followed the Red Sox’ traditional Patriots Day – Marathon Monday morning game vs. the Tampa Bay Rays. Volunteers joined employees of the three organizations along with Major League Baseball’s facility operations senior coordinator, Jason Kobeda, and the City of Boston’s recycling policy director, Susan Casino in sorting trash inside Fenway Park immediately following the game. Click here to read more.

Charlotte Hornets, Spectrum Center, Natur-Tec & More
Showcasing the power of partnerships, a long list of stakeholders told the story of their waste reduction and recycling program implementation at Spectrum Center in Charlotte, NC. The case study includes a description of their waste characterization study, highlights the emphasis placed on staff training, and outlines the various obstacles and solutions encountered during implementation. Click here to read more.

Cleveland Indians
The Indians recently collaborated with Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management on a report to quantify sustainability efforts at Progressive Field. Click here to read more.

Green Sports Alliance
In conjunction with the Portland Timbers Stand Together, Alliance staff volunteered pulling invasive weeds/ivy with the The Forest Park Conservancy. Click here to see more.

Keene State College
At Keene State College Earth Day is every day—the core values of sustainability, personal well-being, and the well-being of the planet, are celebrated all year long. Earth Day and the week leading up to it provide a special focus for their community to look at how to incorporate these values into their daily operations, academic programming, and service opportunities. Click here to read more.

LA Galaxy & StubHub Center
In celebration of Earth Day, the LA Galaxy and StubHub Center hosted Protect the Pitch Day during their match against Seattle Sounders FC on Sunday, April 23rd to showcase the LA Galaxy’s committed effort to become more sustainable and environmentally friendly in all facets of operations. The team hosted and participated in a variety of community events demonstrating its sustainability efforts throughout the week leading up to the match. Click here to read more.

Major League Baseball
“From the new LED field lighting at Camden Yards to the electric vehicle charging stations at SunTrust Park; from the new Green Team at Progressive Field to fresh landscaping around Dodger Stadium; from Boston’s carbon-neutral game to the garden at Safeco Field; from the Rays’ efforts to help oyster reefs to the eighth annual Green Week in St. Louis, Major League Baseball and all 30 of its clubs were ready to celebrate environmental stewardship on Earth Day.” Click here to read more.

Major League Baseball – Commissioner’s Office
Dozens of front-office employees at the Commissioner’s Office, MLB Advanced Media and MLB Network volunteered at the New York Cares Spring Day at Lincoln Terrace Park in Brooklyn. Volunteers were tasked with removing invasive seedlings, composting, planting ground covers and clearing the park of debris — from morning to afternoon. Click here to read more.

Minnesota Twins & Target Field
The Minnesota Twins today announced that they have received LEED Gold certification in Existing Buildings: Operations & Maintenance. Click here to read more.

NASCAR®
NASCAR® announced its fifth annual NASCAR Race to Green™ initiative which builds awareness around the programs NASCAR®, the industry, and multiple partners have developed to reduce its carbon footprint. Click here to read more.

National Basketball Association
NBA Green will join the global celebration of the 47th annual Earth Day by officially launching the NBA Green Energy All-Star campaign to highlight the NBA’s commitment to energy efficiency and renewable energy. Click here to read more.

North Carolina State University & Reynolds Coliseum
Just in time for Earth Day, NCSU achieves LEED Silver certification for their recent renovation of its Reynolds Coliseum. Reynolds is the 15th NCSU university building since 2011 to earn LEED certification, bringing the total amount of LEED-certified space on campus to more than 1 million square feet. Click here to read more.

Novelis, Andrew Ference & Discovery Education
Novelis, Andrew Ference (Alliance Board Member), and Discovery Education launched a new program called  “Life of a Can”, a brand new elementary recycling education program that allows students to explore what the impact is of recycling just one aluminum can. Click here to read more.

Portland Timbers & Portland Thorns
With the help of local community partners and the city of Portland, the Portland Timbers, and Portland Thorns FC presents their sixth annual Stand Together Week in 2017. The comprehensive, week-long community initiative supported dozens of nonprofit projects and volunteer opportunities across the city. Click here to read more.

Natur-tec Highlight: Charlotte, NC’s Spectrum Center

Natur-Blog

2017.04.24-NewsFeed-NaturTec & Spectrum Center-IMAGE

As part of an ongoing effort to highlight dedicated and passionate organics recycling and diversion programs across the country, Natur-Blog spoke to the team heading up the recycling program at Charlotte, NC’s Spectrum Center, home of the Charlotte Hornets. This is a summary of how their program was founded and the success they’ve seen since its inception.

Introduction

With tens of millions of viewers tuning in each night to watch their favorite National Basketball Association (NBA) teams, it’s becoming increasingly vital for these teams and their homes to be cognizant of the power they yield when making a difference in the world, especially with so much emphasis being placed on the environment and sustainability in recent years.

The Charlotte Hornets were fully aware of this responsibility when in early 2015 they began talks with the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority (CRVA) and the city of Charlotte to develop and install a comprehensive recycling plan. As organics recycling and composting was nonexistent at Spectrum Center at the time, the only way was up.  This wasn’t going to be an overnight success and there were no such expectations, but Spectrum Center and CRVA staff aimed to be part of one of the most sustainable organizations in the NBA and it was clear that the time was right to launch such a program.

“With hundreds of thousands of patrons passing through our doors each year, it is important for us to understand the impact our waste has on the environment,” said Spectrum Center General Manager Donna Julian. “Through the addition of recycling and composting, we have been able to significantly cut down the amount of waste coming out of our building.”

Getting Started

Upon the program’s inception, the primary focus immediately turned to recycling as the platform to build on. First efforts were largely shaped thanks to a collaboration with Waste Management, who assisted Spectrum Center and CRVA staff in forming their program by providing them with a waste characterization study which analyzed Spectrum Center’s waste generation and collection efforts over a six-month period. Contamination is always a concern as it relates to recycling.

Not only does it affect the quality of the materials captured, it will add downstream process burdens that result in increased costs. In an effort to help address this concern, Waste Management provided Spectrum Center with a specialty single stream waste bin which was instrumental in reducing contamination while aiding collection efforts. Because of this bin and dedicated inspection of bins and bags, contamination has been contained to a minimum since the program began.

With the help of the waste characterization study, over the next six months Spectrum Center began to work with vendors and service providers such as Jani-King, SupplyWorks, Levy Restaurants, Earth Farms, and the aforementioned Waste Management to develop the steps needed to meet the NBA’s blossoming “green” movement. Regularly scheduled internal meetings which involved various stakeholders were vital, as was constant feedback from all of those involved. These meetings helped shape the future of the program on a real-time basis while identifying opportunities for growth. Out of these partnerships came a system where separate vendors pick up food scraps, corrugate, grease, shredded paper, and pallets, while Waste Management serves as the aluminum and polyethylene terephthalate (PET) plastics hauler.

Though there are many challenges to work around and overcome, having strong partnerships is essential with the goal of achieving a robust recycling program with maximum buy-in from all involved.

“We would not be able to undertake this effort without the assistance of all of our vendors and service providers,” Julian said. “From our food and beverage partner, to our janitorial staff, to the companies that help us with recycling and combustion, having each group play its part has been critical to our early success.”

Read the full blog post here.

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