Approximately 30 percent of American professional sports teams have instituted renewable energy initiatives, while more than half have energy-savings programs in place in their stadiums. We took a look at leaders in energy-efficiency across these sports complexes and identified the top 5 ways that stadiums were driving down energy waste.
LED Lighting and Solar Panels:
MetLife Stadium (part of the Meadowlands Sports Complex and serves as the home of the New York Giants and the New York Jets) consumes 30% less energy than the old Giants Stadium it replaced in 2010, despite being twice as large, thanks to LED lighting and 1,350 solar panels.
M&T Bank Stadium (home of the Baltimore Ravens) installed more than 1,200 solar panels on its field house and ground-keeping buildings, supplying 15% of the team’s electricity needs.
Insulation & Envelope Improvements:
Mercedes Benz Superdome: New Orleans Saints features 400,000 square feet of aluminum barrier to improve the stadiums insulation and reduce heating and cooling costs
Gillette Stadium: New England Patriots has 700,000 square feet of white painted roofs that reduce their cooling loads.
Moda Center, the primary indoor sports arena in Portland, Oregon, has GreenDrop recycling stations, and all plates and cutlery are compostable, which helped them divert 90% of their waste.
Nationals Park, a baseball park based in Washington D.C., has a single-stream recycling program that diverts 80% of the stadium’s waste from landfills.
Building Management System:
Lincoln Financial Field, home of the Super Bowl champs Philadelphia Eagles, is considered one of the greenest stadiums in the world. With an improved building management system, the team was able to reduce its energy bills by 33%.
Globe Life Park, home to the Texas Rangers, has implemented a cloud-based Chiller Plant Analytics software from Entic, a building analytics company, to improve chiller plant efficiency. Although the Rangers are in the process of building a new state-of-the-art stadium right next door, they wanted to be good stewards of the existing stadium without having to upgrade their 24 year old BMS and equipment infrastructure. The added operational intelligence and optimization yielded a 24% improvement in plant efficiency and a reduction of 1.85M kWh’s over the previous season (April-Oct).
Marlins Park, home of the Miami Marlins, is a LEED Gold Certified stadium. With 22% reduction in energy use with solar panels, reduced their water usage in half with innovative plumbing, and cut their irrigation requirements by 60% with new landscape. Despite this being the case, management partnered with Entic to further the building’s efficiency with greater visibility into their key energy systems. With their constant commissioning approach, Entic provided Marlins Park with greater visibility into their building systems, increased vendor collaboration and offered new insights into the property’s pumping, cooling and water consumption to lead to sustainable savings
Learn more: What is Constant Commissioning Anyway?
If you’re looking to build an energy savings program at your property, starting with cost-saving environmental initiatives often helps to garner institutional support for larger structural changes.
Focusing on reducing waste, upgrading to efficient light bulbs, water-efficient fixtures or even printing double-sided – provides momentum to attract organizational interest in greater greening opportunities.
Alongside these incremental changes, consider auditing your utility use to identify low cost, no cost ways to save on your energy spend: are your systems operating at their intended levels, are your sensors providing accurate reads, is there a better schedule for your cooling / heating systems, are their excessive lights on at times when they are not needed?
These methods paired with the five tactics presented here can set any property up to save big on their utility spend, and hold on to those savings.
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