The NFL looks to be a responsible steward of the environment in all areas of its business -- using resources efficiently and minimizing waste. The focus of the NFL's environmental efforts is on greening NFL events and facilities, and working with NFL teams to help them operate their businesses in sustainable, eco-friendly ways.
Greening of NFL Events
The NFL brings environmental principles and best practices to its events - from our largest one (Super Bowl) to those with a more modest environmental footprint.
Minimizing the environmental impact of events is not new for the NFL. The NFL has had a comprehensive, award-winning Super Bowl environmental program for over 15 years. In each Super Bowl host community, the NFL works with local partners to develop and implement a wide array of sustainability projects.
The Super Bowl environmental program has five main initiatives: solid waste management, material reuse, food recovery, sports equipment and book donations, and greenhouse gas reduction.
» Solid Waste Management/Recycling -- Comprehensive solid waste management is implemented at all major Super Bowl facilities including the stadium, NFL Experience, Media Centers, and area hotels. Effective waste management and recycling efforts significantly reduce the amount of waste that goes to landfills.
» Prepared Food Recovery -- Extra prepared food from Super Bowl events is collected for donation. Food recovered through these efforts goes to soup kitchens, shelters and other local organizations that provide meals to people in need.
» Materials Donation -- Decorative materials, building materials, office supplies and other reusable items are recovered and donated to local nonprofit organizations.
» Sports Equipment and Book Donation Project -- The Super Kids-Super Sharing Sports Equipment and Book Donation project asks students to bring usable items to their schools in the weeks leading up to the Super Bowl. These items are be collected and donated to schools and youth organizations throughout the area. The Super Kids-Super Sharing project transfers tens of thousands of items each year from kids that would likely throw away their book or toy, to a youngster that really needs it.
» Greenhouse Gas Reduction/Renewable Energy - The NFL uses renewable energy credits (REC) to offset all energy used major Super Bowl venues. As part of the NFL's reforestation efforts, several thousand tree seedlings are planted each year in the Super Bowl host community. Through an innovative partnership with US Forest Service/USDA, the NFL tracks annually the environmental benefits of the trees it has planted.
The NFL is committed to making its office spaces environmentally responsible places to work. At the NFL's 3 primary office facilities, the league has adopted a number of recent changes to "go green."
Additionally, NFL headquarters will be moving into new office space in Manhattan in 2011 that will be LEED certificated.
NFL teams have embraced the sustainability movement. Many NFL clubs are on the cutting edge of eco-friendly operations and management.
One team that is not just green uniform but also in its business practices is the Philadelphia Eagles. The SportsBusiness Journal called the Eagles Go Green initiative "the most comprehensive greening effort of any major sports team." Since launching Go Green in 2003, the Eagles have recycled thousands of tons of waste; greened their entire supply chain; and created Eagles Forest, a 6.5 acre area in Neshaminy State Park, PA where the Eagles have funded the purchase of more than 4,000 trees and shrubs.
In November of 2010 the Eagles announced a groundbreaking plan to power its stadium, Lincoln Financial Field, exclusively from renewable energy (onsite wind, solar, and bio-fuel). This transformative initiative will be the first of its kind among sports facilities worldwide. The project will not only eliminate the use of fossil fuels at Lincoln Financial Field, but it is also projected to save the Eagles $60M in energy costs over the next 20 years. The Eagles have proven that going green is both good for the environment and good business.
Like the Eagles, other NFL teams have impressive environmental credentials. To name just a few examples:
» The New Meadowlands Stadium, home to the N.Y. Giants and N.Y. Jets, was constructed in a unique partnership with the EPA.