In the past, National Football League stadiums were seen as great hunks of cement and steel that consumed large amounts of energy and wasted water. However, a number of venues have become conscious of the environment and have made design changes that help save energy and other natural resources. Here are five of the “greenest” NFL stadiums.
1. Lincoln Financial Field
Lincoln Financial Field opened to Eagles’ fans in 2003 and is making constant changes to ensure its eco-friendliness. In the beginning, the owners focused on recycling. Within one decade, it has become LEED certified. With its on-going renovation projects, it has dedicated over $100 million to recycling efforts, the installation of greener materials, and plans to re-purpose water within the stadium. Thanks to its “Go Green” campaign, many believe the Eagles have one of the best conservation programs in the NFL. Its most unique recycling efforts include biodiesel purchases. The organization sends used kitchen oil to reprocessors so that it can be converted to biodiesel used to power stadium equipment.
Management has expanded its plans to its employees. At home, workers are encouraged to invest in solar energy and are offered stipends for their cooperation. This proves the deep dedication to preserve our planet.
2. CenturyLink Field
CenturyLink Field is home to the Seattle Seahawks. Thanks to its energy-efficient policies, it is one of the most eco-friendly NFL stadiums in existence. Besides helping the environment, its point-of-use lighting has helped lower its yearly utility expenses by 21 percent. Alongside energy savings initiatives, it has installed low-flow water fixtures. These help save 1.3 gallons of water each year. By offering immediate access to trains, subways, and bus terminals, Seahawk’s management has encouraged the public to use shared transportation. Also, it provides electric vehicle charging stations free of charge.
3. Met Life Stadium
When the New York Jets and Giants began their 2010 seasons, they had a new stadium with numerous green highlights. In an agreement between the EPA and new stadium officials, many strategies were listed to help lower air pollution, conserve energy and water, improve management of waste, and lower environmental concerns during construction.
Throughout development, over 40,000 tons of recycled steel was used, and seating was constructed from partially recycled plastic and scrap metal. Environmentally-friendly concrete was used in the new construction as well. The stadium itself was built on a piece of rehabilitated land. After the stadium was established, it lowered water consumption by 25 percent and replaced conventional paper products in the concession stands with compostable items.
4. Ford Field
Ford Field is just one example of how the Ford Motor company extended its commitment to a green lifestyle. Home of the Detroit Lions, the stadium contains turf constructed from approximately 25,000 recycled tires. Its ceiling and frame contain 30 million pounds of recycled metal as well. Floors in the elevator foyers are crafted from bamboo, a renewable wood. To save on lighting expenses, windows were strategically placed to use less energy.
5. Soldier Field
In 2012, Soldier Field became the first NFL stadium to be awarded the status of LEED certification. During its renovation, it implemented many recycling programs and energy saving incentives. For instance, it re-purposed old soil for re-sodding projects. Today, free charging stations are available to patrons arriving in electric cars. Also, traditional lighting was replaced with energy efficient LED products.
The entire world has been focused on ways to save the environment. Many NFL facilities have taken steps to reduce their carbon footprints and educate patrons about how to become more eco-friendly. The above venues are good examples of leadership that will help preserve our world for future generations.
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