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Blog Archives

Q&A with Bradley Vogel, Sustainability Coordinator, U.S. Bank Stadium

In advance of Super Bowl LII, the Alliance caught up with Bradley Vogel, Sustainability Coordinator at the host venue, U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, MN.

Alliance: U.S. Bank Stadium is one of the newest venues in the country.  Why is sustainability so important to your organization, and what are some things we might not know about your sustainability operations?

BV: Sustainability was a key consideration in the design, construction, and operation phases of the life of the stadium. In the Minneapolis/Saint Paul market, there is a large drive from the state and local government to engage in sustainable operations. The stadium partners also understand that we have a large platform to drive positive environmental change, and with events like the X-games, Super Bowl, and the NCAA Final Four, we realize that we have a large opportunity to engage and encourage fans and staff to think more sustainably in their day-to-day lives. The stadium is exploring all options to mitigate its carbon footprint in the following areas: transportation, energy use, water use, and waste management.

Alliance: One element of your sustainability work that stands out is your pursuit of/classification as a zero waste venue?

BV: Yes. Since July 2016, U.S. Bank Stadium has managed to increase its diversion rate from 20% up to 83% at our most recent event, the NFL Vikings/Saints playoff game on January 14, 2018. It is our goal to achieve the zero-waste mark for the Super Bowl, as well as continue to meet that goal for all major events moving forward.

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Alliance: Signage is often a major challenge in getting fans to sort their waste properly.  Have you had any successes in getting/using messaging, signage, or other fan education tools to help promote better waste practices and decrease your contamination rates?

BV: We have partnered with a non-profit called Recycle Across America (RAA) for our waste signage in the facility. This organization aims to implement standardized waste signage nationwide, so when people go to different areas of the country, they can see consistent waste signage that will help minimize confusion. For example, the Minneapolis/Saint Paul Airport installed RAA signage, so fans who come to the Super Bowl will see similar signage both at the stadium and at the airport. By partnering with RAA, we hope to continue to educate fans about recycling and composting on a larger scale than just at the stadium. One of our ongoing goals of the operation is to increase and improve the signage and fan communication efforts.

Alliance: Tell us a bit more about your composting program.

BV: Starting in July, with help from our concessionaire Aramark, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, and Hennepin County, the stadium implemented a compost program aimed at collecting all food waste and compostable materials. As part of the push to go zero-waste, Aramark switched out most of their food vessels that were not compostable or recyclable except for a few items that do not have compostable or recyclable alternatives. On the back end, we perform a post-event waste sort to ensure that compost is contaminant free, and that all recyclables are recycled. Since July 2017, we have collected more than 77 tons of compostable materials.

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Alliance: What should we look forward to from the U.S. Bank Stadium sustainability team in the coming year?

BV: In the following year, the stadium aims to expand its fan engagement piece of the sustainability program, with hopes of creating a knowledgeable fan base that cannot only support our sustainability initiatives, but can also incorporate some into their daily lives. In addition, the stadium will continue to develop its zero-waste program, with the final goal of becoming an industry leader that others will look to for guidance and support.

Thanks to Bradley and the entire U.S. Bank Stadium team for being leaders in the sports greening movement and demonstrating best practices across the sports industry.

To learn more about the sustainability elements of U.S. Bank Stadium go to: usbankstadium.com/stadium-info/sustainability

Atlanta to Host Green Sports Alliance 2018 Summit

PanStadia & Arena Management

Photo Credit: Mercedes-Benz Stadium

Photo Credit: Mercedes-Benz Stadium

The Green Sports Alliance will hold the 8th annual Green Sports Alliance Summit at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta from June 26-27, 2018.

And the Alliance has also announced that the 9th annual Summit will be held in Philadelphia at Lincoln Financial Field in June 2019.

The Summit brings together hundreds of leaders from professional sports teams, collegiate programmes, venue management companies, and other pioneers in environmental stewardship to exchange the latest thinking around greening the sports industry and engaging fans.

Scott Jenkins, general manager, Mercedes-Benz Stadium and board chair of the Green Sports Alliance said:

As the first professional sports stadium in the US to be awarded LEED Platinum certification, Mercedes-Benz Stadium has been at the forefront of innovation in sustainability efforts. We look forward to welcoming like-minded thought leaders in the industry to help further the sports sustainability movement.

Touting the most LEED points earned to date for a sports venue in the world, Mercedes-Benz Stadium will serve as an apropos location for the Summit.

The stadium utilises renewable energy, has a stormwater recapture and storage system, and boasts 82,500ft2 of efficient LED lighting.

The stadium and home teams, the Falcons and United FC, are dedicated to their community and participate in food recovery and donation programmes, partner with Trees Atlanta to share captured rainwater for tree irrigation, and participate in the Novelis Recycle for Good programme collecting aluminum cans to fund Habitat for Humanity home builds.

Justin Zeulner, executive director of the Green Sports Alliance said:

“We are honoured and excited to host our 2018 Summit in the great city of Atlanta, at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. The Falcons and United FC are leaders in environmental stewardship and it’s incredible to see members of the Green Sports Alliance take sustainability in the sports industry to new heights with their innovative environmental solutions and dedication to the well-being of their community.

Arthur Blank’s commitment to ‘do the right thing’ for Atlanta is exemplified in this stadium and its operations.”

The theme for this year’s Summit is “PLAY GREENER: Get in the Game” and will focus on taking action that encourages collaborative problem-solving to achieve sustainable change across the sports spectrum.

Read the full story at PanStadia & Arena Management.

Read the press release.

NIBS Announces 2017 Beyond Green High-Performance Building and Community Awards

FM Link
by Brianna Crandall

The National Institute of Building Sciences recognized the winners of the 2017 Beyond Green High-Performance Building and Community Awards on January 10 during Building Innovation 2018: The National Institute of Building Sciences Sixth Annual Conference and Expo in Washington, DC.

Innovations for High-Performance Buildings and Communities

The Honor Award, First Place in the Innovations for High-Performance Buildings and Communities category, went to MFree-SCCF from Permasteelisa North America. The MFree-SCCF is designed to capture the benefits of a double-skin façade and integrated shading device without the potential maintenance costs and space requirements of a double-skin façade.

According to juror Bill Updike, principal with Integral Group, if effectively deployed, the MFree-SCCF system “can help realize energy performance goals while limiting long-term maintenance costs and the loss of rentable space.”

The system reportedly offers many of the benefits of a double-skin façade: a shading device protected in a cavity, which modulates solar heat gain and is controlled by the building management system. However, unlike most double façades, it is a unitized system that is completely assembled in a factory with high quality control.

There is no catwalk required for maintenance access, and the useable floor area is thereby increased (the depth of the cavity is not larger than the framing depth needed for structural wind loads). Maintenance costs are also reduced with just two surfaces to clean — the same as a conventional single-skin façade — instead of four. Installation of façade panels can be carried out in a single operation instead of installing each skin plus the catwalk individually. This reduces cost and accelerates construction speed.

“We have designed the pressure system that allows us to fine-tune the pressure that goes into the cavity,” noted Alberto Franceschet, executive vice president, Business Development and Sales at Permasteelisa North America.

High-Performance Initiatives

The Honor Award, First Place in the High-Performance Initiatives category, went to the Make the Switch at Phipps! Green Power Drive of the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Garden. The initiative was born out of a desire to respond to results from a 2016 survey that found nearly nine out of ten of its guests consider climate change a threat now or in the future. Pennsylvania allows its residents to choose renewable energy; they just need the information, assistance and motivation to do it, noted Phipps. The Make the Switch at Phipps! Green Power Drive allows guests to switch their home electricity to 100% green power right on the spot and receive a free Phipps membership.

Juror Justin J. Zeulner, executive director and co-founder of the Green Sports Alliance, pointed out, “By demonstrating the impact energy choices have on the region and then giving visitors a clear means to do something about it, Phipps has created a powerful initiative worthy of recognition.”

Read the full story.

SPORTS MEMBERS INCLUDE...
396
TOTAL SPORTS MEMBERS
188
TEAMS
193
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15
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