In time for Earth Day last week, the University of Arizona in Tucson became the ninth NCAA college athletics program to join the Green Sports Alliance. The membership is the next step in the Wildcats’ ongoing commitment to sustainability in both event operations and in the maintenance of their athletic facilities.
Some of the steps already taken by the Arizona athletic department prior to joining the Green Sports Alliance include:
- the environmentally-friendly design and operation of the UA Student Recreation Center, the first campus facility of its type in the United States to receive LEED Platinum designation after its recent expansion;
- new light fixtures at Arizona Stadium, reducing light pollution by 75 percent and reducing energy use during night games;
- the Hillenbrand Aquatic Center has converted to solar energy for its water-heating systems for both the pools and locker-room showers;
- the new Lowell-Stevens Football Facility, once completed, is designed to achieve at least LEED Silver status for new construction.
“In addition to continuing to walk the walk, we look forward to working with and through the Green Sports Alliance to determine and refine best practices and contribute to their adoption by other universities, professional sports teams and venues,” said Arizona athletics director Greg Byrne after the announcement.