The World Series is a championship full of wins, losses, home runs and cheering. However, it's also the time of year fans overindulge in hot dogs, beer, popcorn and any other concession stand snacks. While sports and food is on the mind of many during a time like the World Series, waste management, energy efficiency and sustainability may not.
Waste management at the professional level (including NHL, NBA, NFL and MLB) generates approximately 35,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide from fans' waste. If stadiums don't actively recycle or practice sustainability, the amount of trash headed to the landfill will only increase and negatively impact our environment.
Since it's the end of the 2015 baseball season, why not look into how this year's playoff champions practice sustainability in their home stadiums. Do these teams go green anywhere else besides their grass field?
Citi Field: Home of 2015 National League Champions
Citi Field, home of the New York Mets, is a fairly new ballpark that started construction in 2006 and opened in 2009. According to the snapshot about Citi Field by the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), during the construction of Citi Field, the team placed efforts on developing a fan-friendly and environmentally friendly stadium. Citi Field's stadium includes an impressive field, dugout, clubhouse, press box, scoreboard to appeal to fans and energy-efficient features to promote environmentally responsible behavior.
In 2008, the Mets pledged that Citi Field would uphold high environmental standards and construction would include various green initiatives to improve the environment and reduce the stadium's carbon footprint. According to the New York Mets, thanks to its partnership with the U.S. EPA, Citi Field has reduced waste production, energy and water usage.
Some of the green initiatives featured on the New York Mets website include the purchase of green energy, implementation of low-flow faucets, toilets and urinals, use of fluorescent light bulbs and reusing recycled steel during construction. The stadium's green roof also complements the other green initiatives across the ballpark. According to the Alliance to Save Energy, the roof acts as extra insulation to cool the park in the summer and retain heat in the winter.
Ewing M. Kauffman Stadium: Home of 2015 American League Champions
The Kansas City Royals, alongside the Mets, offer a state-of-the-art entertainment facility and are instituting environmental initiatives at their ballpark. Kauffman Stadium is a historic ballpark that over the years has hosted more than 70 million visitors. In regards to supporting green, in 2012 Kauffman Stadium embraced solar energy. According to MLB.com, the Royals partnered with KKCP&L and installed the largest in-stadium solar system in Major League Baseball.
In addition to solar panels, Kauffman Stadium also supports recycling and keeping the stadium clean via the Royals Green Team – a group of volunteers that help keep Kauffman Stadium green during regular season home games.
Even though only one team will win the World Series title, both teams will walk away as champions this year – in regards to baseball and environmental advocacy.