I have been honored to serve on the sustainability committee and the energy efficiency/renewable energy workgroup for Super Bowl LII on behalf of the Great Plains Institute during the past year.
With the goal of reducing the environmental impacts of the event, the committee focused on several areas including waste reduction, energy, urban forestry, and habitat restoration.
The energy efficiency/renewable energy workgroup’s strategy was to offset greenhouse gas emissions at both U.S. Bank Stadium and other Super Bowl venues by way of energy efficiency and renewable energy options.
The workgroup, which met once or twice a month during the last year, included:
- Bridget Dockter, Xcel Energy, facilitator
- Audrey Partridge, CenterPoint Energy
- Megan Hoye, Center for Energy & Environment
- Haltson Sleets, City of Minneapolis
- Michael Dwyer, NRG Energy
- Diana McKeown, Great Plains Institute
Through our meetings, we identified two primary areas of focus:
- Promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy
- Developing a best practices document for generator use at large Super Bowl events
The intent was not only to provide options for Super Bowl LII, but also to create a guide for other sporting events and venues.
Based on the areas of focus above, the committee made the following recommendations:
- Use of LED lights by vendors
- Purchase Windsource® to offset the energy being used at Super Bowl-related venues including for Super Bowl
- Live on Nicollet Mall during the 10 days around Super Bowl LII
- Energy efficiency education for the hospitality sector, highlighting the energy efficient buildings in Minneapolis
- Put together a best practice document for vendors, including recommendations for generators
In addition to renewable energy use, there is a major effort to make the big game a zero-waste event. As you can read in this recent Fortune Magazine, that would mean reusing, repurposing, recycling, or composting the 40 tons of waste that are expected to be generated.
I’m looking forward to taking part in this effort by staffing a recycling/composting station at U.S. Bank Stadium during the Super Bowl. While I’m sad that I won’t be cheering on our home team Vikings (I was hoping for a #skolbowl), I’m really excited to welcome attendees and share tips on how to reduce waste. It will be a great opportunity to show the world how seriously we take sustainability. You can see my photos from inside U.S. Bank Stadium on Super Bowl Sunday by following me on Twitter @Longfellowdi.
UPDATE: Watch my Twitter interview from the Super Bowl with Minneapolis StarTribune reporter Libor Jany below.
This being Minneapolis and all, game organizers committed to a zero waste target, Diana McKeown, of the Great Plains Institute, explains: pic.twitter.com/uYa8fHu2JZ
— Libor Jany (@StribJany) February 4, 2018