Greening our Stadiums and Ballparks Part 1

Uploaded by whitehouse on 19.07.2012

Rohan Patel: Thanks, everyone, for being here.
My name is Rohan Patel.
I work here at the White House Council
on Environmental Quality.
And we really could not be more excited about today's event,
sports and sustainability.
As you all know, President Obama is a huge sports fan,
and has made the clean energy economy a centerpiece of
his administration.
So today's event, we feel, is quite fitting.
Our panels today will feature leaders of the sports leagues,
stadium operators, stadium managers and companies who have
partnered with the leagues to innovate the supply chain.
So to get this event started, I'd like to introduce Jon
Carson, the President's Director of Public Engagement.
Jon is an environmental engineer by training and is really the
driver behind these events at the White House.
He's been a mentor to me and many of our staff here at the
White House, and thank you for being here, Jon.
Jon Carson: Good morning, everyone.
Audience: Good morning.
Jon Carson: Welcome to the White House.
Let me be the first of a long list of folks who are going to
thank you for what you're doing across the country
to green sports.
And I'm here to start out the day with an ask of all of you.
We're going to have a fantastic day.
You are going to hear from all sorts --
you are going to hear all sorts of concrete great stories of
change that's happening from stadiums to racetracks to Little
League baseball fields across the country today.
You're going to hear from administrative --
administration officials and a chance for a back and forth.
But my ask of all of you is to help us tell what you
hear today.
Help us blog about it, tweet about it.
If you grab three people in the grocery store this weekend and
tell them the story of being here at the White House today,
tell them the story of what you learned.
We're going to be using the hash tag green sports.
If you don't know what a hash tag is, ask someone next to you,
they'll tell you.
And help us get this story out.
I ask you to do that for two reasons.
First, you are going to hear concrete ideas, best practices,
that you can share with the circles that you work in.
You are going to hear about administration programs that
maybe could be partners to take what you're doing to the
next level.
But the second reason I ask you to share this story is because
what we see is we hold events like this here at
the White House.
What we learned is that Americans are inspired to take
action, not by theories, not by ideas,
but by concrete examples of others who are making change.
When people find out what's going on in that stadium in
their backyard, they're going to be inspired to green their
local school.
They're going to be inspired to think maybe I could have a
career in this field, as well.
And so please help us get this story told.
And speaking of inspiring, the other thing I'm here to do today
is to introduce our keynote speaker and our administration
official who's really going to kick today off.
I think my personal favorite member of the President's
Cabinet and someone who understands at her core what all
of you are proving across this country,
that we don't face a choice between our
environment and jobs.
She understands and is putting into practice administration
policies across this country that show what you are proving,
that cleaning our environment helps us create a strong
economy as well.
So with that, I'd like to introduce the administrator of
the Environmental Protection Agency, Lisa Jackson.
Lisa Jackson: Wow, you can feel the energy in this room.
I come to lots of outreach events.
My dear friend, Jon Carson, does an amazing job running the
President's outreach here in the White House and brings in all
kinds of groups.
And there's just a real energy and excitement this morning.
And I think it's on the part of those of us who are here to meet
with you and I hope you feel it, as well.
This is an amazing room.
It's an amazing time to be here.
But the excitement is really coming because of what you're
doing on the ground.
And I want to thank you.
I want to thank you first and foremost for joining us.
I know that it's not only the folks who are here in this room,
but the folks who are watching us online and will be watching
us in the future.
It is great to join you here and to join my administration
colleagues in welcoming you to the White House.
We are very excited to have you here.
We're hosting this forum to bring together a targeted group
of people who have the opportunity,
as you already know, to make enormous amounts of change.
Talking about sports and sustainability together gives us
a new and very interesting way to talk about the challenges
that every household, every business, every school,
every house of worship faces.
Challenges like energy efficiency.
Challenges like wanting to recycle,
but wanting to know it can be done without becoming an
all-consuming task.
Challenges like conserving water.
And, of course, the benefits that go along with all those
things, which are cost savings.
Our sports venues across our nation are like tiny cities that
come to life for hours at a time.
I've had the privilege of going backstage,
I guess you would call it, at some of the stadiums,
most recently in Seattle right before a Mariners game,
which I didn't stay for, by the way,
and where they pitched a no-hitter.
How does that happen?
But, you know, so I've seen what happens, though,
and it's really quite amazing.
It's everything a mayor might have to deal with but is
compressed into a smaller space, lots of people.
So it's everything from water to energy to dealing with waste,
and doing it in a way that also takes care of our communities,
the communities around those venues.
You have disposal needs.
You have water supply needs.
You have power needs.
Everything from turning on the stadium lights, of course,
but also doing the laundry after the game is over.
In some case, the sports venues end up taking up --
taking over entire cities.
We can see that coming.
Obviously it's a pretty auspicious time with what's
going to happen in London next week.
Or in the case of Rio de Janeiro,
which is getting ready for two big events,
the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympic Games.
And they're undertaking extraordinary efforts on their
own to lead the world in sustainability around the events
that those games and opportunities represent.
So by coming together at the White House,
we're taking another step in a movement.
This is a movement that I've been happy to watch gain
momentum and begin to take hold all across our country.
I've been very excited in recent years to see how the sports
world has come to understand the importance and the benefits of
innovative and cost effective sustainable practices.
And I've been really pleased to see how many organizations are
coming forward, expressing their own interest in greener ways of
doing business that will protect health and clean up
the environment.
Now, I'm proud to say that this is one of those occasions where
we are able to watch from the sidelines,
but that's not all we're going to do at the EPA.
EPA has been an active participant in your efforts.
We recently signed a memorandum of agreement --
of understanding with NASCAR to help them green the sport,
to help them use products at their events that meet EPA's
design for the environment standards and to find creative
avenues for raising environmental awareness
at events.
We're proud to have five members of the sports world as Green
Power Partners, including the Philadelphia Eagles,
the Phillies and the National Hockey League.
We've had the chance to work with the Green Sports Alliance,
a group that grew by nearly 700% in its first year --
700% growth in one year -- to facilitate the use of Energy
Star and expand energy efficiency generally amongst
people who come to events.
In 2011, the Stadium Managers Association held an Energy Bowl,
one of the first energy efficiency competitions led by
any sports association.
The Energy Bowl included 20 participants from Major League
Baseball and the NFL who worked to be as efficient as possible.
The competition ended up saving enough electricity to light
almost 7,500 homes annually.
Think about that.
In one event, one competition, one moment of focusing on what
we can all do together voluntarily.
And that same competition met reducing greenhouse gas
emissions equivalent to those generated from nearly 2,000
cars per year.
The cost savings they experienced topped a
million dollars.
Last, but not least, EPA's built some great working partnerships
with teams and their venues to increase recycling and reduce
trash that ends up in landfills, to donate safe,
unused food to shelters, to increase things like composting
of organic materials.
These are the kinds of initiatives that show the
professional sports world and people who love it that taking
steps to save energy, cut waste and clean up pollution is not
just good for our health, it's also good for our bottom line.
What's probably the best news is that the message reaches well
beyond the fields or the courts or the stadiums.
The love of sports is something millions of Americans share.
I know it certainly that that includes our first fan,
President Obama.
Oftentimes our games and our teams are the only things you
can get people inside the Beltway to focus on together
outside of government and politics.
I come to you today as an environmental advocate and a
sports lover.
I grew up in New Orleans, Louisiana,
four years old when the Saints came marching in.
And that's the team I've been rooting for all my life,
through good times and bad.
I know just how -- but we just signed him, so we're good.
I just know -- I know just how important the teams can be to
the fans that love them, and I know how influential they can be
by raising awareness and leading the way on the important issues
that affect us all.
That covers everything from recycling at the field,
being a reminder to recycle at home,
to spectators watching a NASCAR driver hit 180 miles an hour
using alternative green fuel, to hearing Jerome Bettis talk about
struggling with asthma and the importance of clean air,
which he recently did for us at the EPA.
It's deeply inspiring to see a coalition of teams and stadiums
and players and other organizations who some would say
have other things to do, instead coming together on your own to
set the right example and engage millions of people in protecting
the environment.
I always say that protecting our natural environment and
treasuring our spaces is a deeply American value.
So is sports.
What an extraordinary marriage.
This forum is an excellent opportunity to build on the
changes that have been made and accelerate the momentum of
your movement.
As a sports fan and someone who cares deeply about our health
and the sustainability of our communities,
I'm looking forward to a great event and lots to build on from
the meetings today.
We're happy to be working with you to find a better
way to play.
Thank you all very much.
Enjoy the day here, and I hope you have a really
productive meeting.
Rohan's going to introduce our first panel today.
Rohan Patel: Thanks a lot.
Thanks, Administrator Jackson.
And before we get started with the panel,
I just wanted to thank a couple of people.
We couldn't put these events on at the White House without a lot
of help, and Martin Tull and the Green Sports Alliance have been
a huge help to all of us.
Martin, you and your staff, really appreciate your help.
And then Allen Hershkowitz, who is going to be moderating,
co-moderating this first panel.
Allen, the team at NRDC, yourself and others have just
been a huge inspiration to us on this event,
and we thank you for that.
So to get us started, the two moderators that we have today,
Allen Hershkowitz is a senior scientist at the National
Resources Defense Council.
Dr. Hershkowitz is a leader in the movement to make environment
responsibility understandable and achievable for every
individual and institution.
He joined the senior staff in 1988, more than two decades ago,
and has been the force behind some of NRDC's most effective
and most visible initiatives.
He's a champion of systematic change on critical issues,
ranging from recycling to forestry,
paper industry impacts, mountaintop coal mining,
waste incineration and medical waste.
Thanks, Allen, for joining us.
And then very excited to have Jon Powers.
Jon is a friend and a colleague at CEQ.
Jon was appointed by the President to serve as the
administration's Federal Environmental Executive.
And in this capacity, Jon is responsible for promoting
environmental initiatives throughout the
federal government.
Sustainability and energy security are his calling cards.
And Jon previously spent time at the Department of Army where he
was -- where he's a leader on many of the energy and
environmental initiatives taking place at DOD.
He also served as chief operating officer at the Truman
National Security Project where he focused on energy
security issues.
And prior to serving at the Truman Project,
Jon served our country for four years as an officer in the U.S.
Army, including a 15-month tour in Iraq as part of Operation
Iraq Freedom.
So Jon, go ahead and take it away.
Jon Powers: Thanks, Rohan.
And thank you so much for joining us here today.
As Rohan mentioned, I did spend 15 months in Iraq as a captain
in the Army.
And one of the most important lessons I've learned I think in
all my time in public service was literally the first day I
showed up to my unit as a fresh lieutenant coming out
of college.
I got to my artillery unit where,
for those who have served, it's a really sort of scary
experience, because you are walking into a group of soldiers
who have done this for sometimes 17, 18, 20 years,
they've been doing this their entire career,
and all of a sudden you're supposed to be in charge as a
young lieutenant.
And I luckily had a great platoon sergeant who literally
grabbed my lapels and he dragged me around to the side of the
motor pool and he said, sir, there are two types of leaders
in the military.
There's those that lead by rank and there's those that lead
by example.
The soldiers, they're going to follow the ones that lead by
rank because they have to, that's the way the
military works.
But they want to follow someone that sets a standard and someone
that sets an example.
I'm lucky, because I serve a president who understands that,
understands leadership by example.
And one of the first things he did early on in his
administration was he called on the federal government to lead
by example in the areas of energy and sustainability,
and specifically put out an executive order called
Leadership By Example.
And I have the honor of overseeing that and working with
the agencies to help push them in that direction.
But one of the things I'm really excited about this panel today
is these are folks who do exactly the same thing and
understand that exact same type of leadership,
and they're doing it throughout their industries.
And many of you in the room, I think, are part of
that, as well.
There's so much that we can learn from each other,
from what we do in the federal government.
You know, we've got over half a million buildings,
we have 600,000 vehicles, we have 1.8 million federal
employees in pretty much all communities throughout
the country.
So we have grand challenges when looking at how to reduce our
greenhouse gases or increase our renewable energy use or have a
more sustainable supply chain.
But I think in the sporting industry,
you have some incredibly unique challenges, as well.
And so those lessons that we're going to hear about today I
think hopefully will be a continued dialogue that Allen
and I are already working on, so that we can learn from each
other in these areas.
We do have some great successes since the President put out the
executive order.
We have reduced our greenhouse gases.
We have increased our renewable energy use.
You have things like solar powered parking arrays going
over top of areas for VA hospitals and they're becoming
the key places where senior veterans are coming in to park
because they're covered parking.
You've got the Army moving forward with a net zero
installation effort where they're trying to get
installations -- 17 installations that are net zero
energy, waste and water by 2020.
You've got folks in the Navy today out in Hawaii launching
the Great Green Fleet, which will be sailing on biofuels,
a 50/50 blend.
It's an incredible effort.
So these initiatives are really driven by the leadership shown
here by the President, but also by our great employees
throughout the federal government.
So I'm excited to learn about some of the efforts you have
going on, what motivates you in your industries, and, you know,
I think Allen has really a fantastic breadth of
knowledge in this.
I've only got to recently know him,
and I'm really excited to be working with him on this panel.
Some of the things I just want to throw out before we
get started.
After a little introduction, we'll do sort of a joint Q&A.
We're going to open up some questions to the audience.
For those folks watching online, we're taking Twitter questions.
Jon Carson laid out the hash tag earlier,
but it's hash tag green sports.
So please send your questions in.
We'll make sure we incorporate them in the conversation.
So with that, I'd like to turn it over to my partner, Allen,
and thank you so much for joining us.
Allen Hershkowitz: This is a great day for the planet, really.
First of all, I want to thank our friends at CEQ,
especially Kyle Lierman, Eli Levine, Rohan, Jon.
Thank you so much for validating the work that many of us in this
room have been doing for quite a while.
The people who founded the sports greening movement,
the people who nurtured the sports greening movement,
and the people who are leading the sports greening movement are
in this room today.
And what a beautiful room it is, and what a wonderful validation
of our efforts over the last few years.
This collaboration between environmentalism and
professional sports is unprecedented and holds the
potential to be one of the most meaningful collaborations in the
history of the environmental movement.
13% of Americans say they follow science.
61% say they follow sports.
If you want to change the world, don't emphasize how different
you are from everybody else.
The fact that we are able to marshal the economic influence
of professional sports, it's a $400 billion industry.
It's almost as large as the auto industry.
The supply chain of professional sports is global.
Every industry meets on a baseball field.
Every industry meets on a football field or a
basketball court.
The energy industry, the chemicals industry,
the textile industry, the water industry,
the food and beverage industry, the plastics industry.
All of these industries are affiliated with
professional sports.
And for me, one of the most beautiful things about
professional sports is that it's nonpartisan.
This takes our issue to a level of mainstream acknowledgment
that frankly no other industry, not the film industry,
and not the music industry, those two other critical
cultural sectors, none of those industries can validate the
nonpartisan nature of environmentalism as
authentically as sports' embrace of this cause.
And we do need a cultural shift in our thinking about how we
relate to the planet.
And as we know from previous progress we've made socially on
other cultural shifts, that leadership doesn't always come
from government.
The Civil Rights Act was enacted not because Congress led the
way, but because there was a cultural shift in Americans
thinking about race relations and it forced the
government to act.
The Vietnam War did not end because Congress led the way in
defunding that conflict.
There was a cultural shift in the way people thought about the
war and government responded.
The same is true for gender equality,
for drunk driving and for marriage equality.
In all of those areas, people have forced government to
respond progressively.
Frankly, I think it's fair to say that as somebody doing this
work for more than 30 years, environmental work,
it doesn't seem to me that Congress is leading the way in
resolving our most pressing ecological issues,
whether that is on global climate disruption or
biodiversity loss or water pollution or water scarcity or
ocean acidification or the proliferation of toxic wastes.
We have many, many environmental issues.
And frankly, we're not getting the leadership out of Congress
on legislation that some of us would like to see.
This collaboration with professional sports offers us
the opportunity to educate and encourage Congress about the
business case of environmentalism.
The fact is that 15 stadiums and arenas in this country are
already lead certified.
Actually, it will be 16 in September when AEG's Barclays
Arena opens up in Brooklyn, my hometown.
But I don't have any tickets or preferential seats or
anything like that.
But I'm going to work on that.
17 facilities have already installed solar panels.
Now, if you look at the energy production from those solar
panels, if you look at the footprint of professional
sports, you recognize they're not the biggest ecological
pressure on the planet.
Professional sports is not the biggest ecological pressure on
the planet.
But as we know, and as this room knows,
there is no one single large undertaking that we could carry
out that's going to solve our global ecological pressures.
All we can do are relatively small things:
drive more fuel efficient cars, eat local organic food,
conserve water, recycle, be environmentally intelligent in
how we procure.
The situation we're in, the 90 million tons of global warming
pollution that's emitted every day,
they come from millions of sources and it's going to take
millions of environmentally intelligent decisions to turn
that around.
And that's what professional sports is showing us.
They're changing the toilet paper to recycle content
toilet paper.
They're changing their game day programs and their media guides
and their concession napkins.
They're educating fans, millions of them.
The U.S. Tennis Association, the NBA, the National Hockey League,
the National Football League, Major League Baseball,
have all put out public service announcements --
some you're going to see -- that encourage people to be
responsible environmental stewards.
So we have a great, great opportunity here.
I'm going to now launch into a question for our panel.
Let me introduce our panel, by the way.
We have distinguished folks.
Bob Nutting is the Chairman of the Board of the
Pittsburgh Pirates.
One of the best environmentalists I know in the
world happens to own the Pittsburgh Pirates
baseball team.
That's a wonderful thing.
He's just a philanthropist, a cause-oriented businessman with
a great conscience.
Mike Lynch is the head of sustainability for NASCAR.
He'll tell you how influential NASCAR is,
whether it's two or three times the viewership of the NFL and
the NBA.
But we know that NASCAR, and, you know,
I worked with Roush Fenway NASCAR Club when, you know,
they build their cars.
And they're going for lead certification.
They produce no waste.
A lot of folks just focus on the cars going around the track.
But there's a lot more to NASCAR than that.
And all sports, and all businesses,
and all culture engender environmental impacts.
It's not just NASCAR cars going around the track.
Mike Richter, who won the Stanley Cup for the New York
Rangers, a Hall of Fame goalie, followed up his career in the
NHL by going to Yale School of Forestry in environmental
science, getting a degree.
Now runs a company called Healthy Planet Partners.
He's here representing the National Hockey League,
one of the leaders in our sports greening movement.
So I want to give a shout out to the folks from the leagues,
from Major League Baseball, from the NFL,
from the National Basketball Association, from the USTA,
from Major League Soccer.
Oh, God, if I forget anybody, I'm screwed.
But thank you so much for your embrace of this cause.
What I want to ask the panel is this.
As everybody knows, sports embraces causes, literacy,
supporting the troops, housing, poverty.
What is it about environmentalism,
what motivated you -- and let's start with Bob Nutting --
what motivated you to embrace environmentalism as a cause to
publicize and to incorporate into your business dealings?
Bob Nutting: Perfect.
Allen, thanks.
And let me start just by, Jon, thank you for including and
putting this together, and Allen,
your comments covered most of what I was hoping to say today.
The only thing I --
The only thing I need to disagree with is the comment
that only 17% follow science and 61 follow sports.
I think that's technically accurate.
But most of us in the room recognize that you're the rock
star here today, because I think the reason we are as engaged as
we are, while I've had a personal passion for the
environment, a personal commitment to sustainability
through my involvement, nature conservancy,
frankly growing up in a challenged state like West
Virginia where we have beautiful national resources and we have
streams that run red with acid mine drainage,
but really ignited my excitement for sustainability in sports
when I saw Allen on a panel.
And you helped open up my eyes to the visibility and awareness
that we can drive in sports to this topic.
People look at sports stars as role models.
It's an opportunity to demonstrate great behavior.
We have 2 million people, more since we're in
first place now --
-- coming through the stadium every year.
It's an opportunity to demonstrate good behavior,
whether it's a recycling program,
which we didn't have four years ago.
We sent 1.2 million bottles and cans into the landfill just four
years ago before we got started.
No reason for that to happen in today's world.
We can take the simple steps, model behavior that it's --
that we can indeed have a positive impact.
And so I think the reason I'm excited is because it's
something we can do.
We can make a real impact through the world of sports,
opening people's eyes up, demonstrating good behavior and
helping to move that needle and move those million little
decisions that need to be made, by making a few good decisions
of our own.
Allen Hershkowitz: Beautiful, thanks.
Mike Richter from the NHL.
Mike Richter: Well, I would just echo that and thank you for having us.
I think why there's so many causes in the NHL,
and all sports, really, have great community relations.
They understand that the reflection of their individual
towns, and they try to get out in the community.
I think the New York Rangers, and they were great about
getting us out there in the league and individual teams.
But why sports and the environment?
Because I think there's a perfect intersection there.
Human performance is all about health.
You cannot perform to your maximum unless you're healthy.
And the environment and human health intersect,
as everybody knows.
And so I think it's not -- it shouldn't be considered a rare
thing for sports to be talking about the environment.
It's the absolutely perfect platform for so many reasons.
But the specific one is just, it's about human performance.
And, you know, I sat with Allen, with Commissioner Bettman,
and the first thing he said is, I want to be the greenest
sports league.
Everybody says that, but it's very, very difficult to do.
And it is these million little decisions on how you go
about it.
And the 180 turn that I have seen even in the last five years
has been stunning, and it's mostly from a lot of
your efforts.
But I think that consciousness is starting to dawn on a lot of
the leaders in sports.
And it's going to filter down into the public that
watches them.
Allen Hershkowitz: Great.
Mike Lynch.
Mike Lynch: I think, Mike, you hit it spot on.
From NASCAR's perspective, the insight that got this all
started in NASCAR, which, yes, we have an enormous fan base,
we have an enormous weekly viewership, incredibly loyal,
incredibly proprietary fan base in terms of pride
around the sport.
And so you put all that together,
what it actually adds up to is an opportunity to make relevant,
intuitive and simple what green and sustainability can really be
about, which performance is really the key.
So the opportunity to break the compromise essentially in the
minds of folks that being -- having a sustainability focus or
a green focus involves compromising something in terms
of product experience, actual performance, et cetera,
that's simply not -- that's not necessary.
And actually, we actually feel, you know,
the original insight to launch NASCAR Green four years ago
that, you know, emanated from our leadership in a
very real way.
Our chairman Brian France, Mike Helton, our president, you know,
Lisa Kennedy, the CEO of, you know,
International Speedway Corporation,
they had a sense that the company was --
the country was moving in a green direction and that NASCAR
could participate in that in all humility in a way that would
be productive.
Well, what's actually happened over these four years,
which I think everybody is saying,
is that breaking the compromise of performance and green is
already happening.
And actually, you know, our, you know, when you --
you actually mentioned, there's a lot more to NASCAR than the
cars going around the track.
I would actually say you're absolutely right.
And the things that Roush Fenway are doing in terms of recycling
96% of the material from a retired race car,
that's phenomenal, right?
And the idea that consumers could do that, as well,
an end-of-life-cycle vehicle doesn't have to go to a junk
yard, it can actually go into recycled materials pipeline that
ends up back in the economy.
I mean, that's a fantastic story, right.
But by all means focus on the cars on the track,
because our American ethanol program with Sunoco green E15
with 15% American grown by American corn farmers,
American made by American ethanol plants that have created
half a million jobs in the past decade,
we get more horsepower out of that, out of that.
So it's not you're trading off something for performance.
The cars go faster and you can actually apply that thinking to
everything, recycling, renewable energy,
green product development, the whole basket.
And that's something that that's why our fans are --
our fans are 50% more likely than non-fans to actually think
of their household as very green and looking for ways to
positively impact the environment,
whereas four years ago, fans and non-fans in our research
were the same.
But now NASCAR fans think green to a greater extent than the
average in a world where the average moved over the
past four years.
And we really believe that a big driver of that is the fact that
performance doesn't have to be sacrificed for sustainability.
That's our opportunity.
Allen Hershkowitz: So Jon Powers and I are going to alternate on questions, and Jon.
Jon Powers: Mike, that's actually a great lead-in to my next question.
You know, a couple of years ago, I was part of an organization
where we helped sponsor actually an ARCA team,
but it was part of a NASCAR race out in Kansas City,
went to the Kansas City Speedway.
We had a group of veterans out there talking about energy,
security and sustainability.
And we had over 30,000 folks at this weekend come by to learn
more from us about this.
We had a car wrapped with solar --
it had solar panels and windmills on it.
And for me, that was actually my first race event and it was an
eye opener and it really, I think,
helped educate me on the ability that the sports industry has to
engage with your fans.
And I think you talked a little bit about that.
But what are some of the initiatives that you're doing to
engage with those fans?
Mike Lynch: I'd be glad to go through those.
And actually, you know, you mentioned sort of the car,
and just wanted to kind of add this, too.
It's actually very much not a small thing to drive a
high-MPG car, right?
I mean, CAFE standards are helping sort of nudge the
industry in a direction of increased efficiency.
But what's happening today as well is,
and we can reflect that on the track, is that --
and you're seeing it in the marketplace, right,
I don't know, I mean, back in the '70s when folks bought
compact cars, you absolutely sacrificed performance to have
that higher miles per gallon and to actually, you know,
not have to wait, you know, in a line at the gas station back in
the '70s when there were shortages and that
sort of thing.
Today, compact cars, subcompact cars that Toyota, Ford,
Chevy and Dodge sell, our manufacturers that are in NASCAR
are awesome cars.
I mean, I don't know, but folks in this audience probably drive,
I mean, the Dodge Dart, Chevy volt, Chevy Cruze, Toyota Camry.
The Toyota Camry hybrid flies, right.
The Ford Fusion is a great car.
So you're not trading anything off.
And so what we do in NASCAR is try to use the sport in all
humility to offer up visibility and relevance and simplicity
around that.
So really, we break it down the same way everybody does.
I'm sure, you know, Bob, you think about this the same way.
I mean, you gather a whole bunch of people in a place,
there's certain things that are pretty basic, right.
You've got waste to deal with.
You've got emissions and you've got power generation.
And so recycling -- and the thing about recycling --
so recycling is kind of like -- recycling, frankly,
is almost ho-hum now.
Because over these four years, folks just kind of, I mean,
I'm sure everybody, your kids have educated you about
recycling, right?
Our daughter, Samantha, she lectured me about drinking water
out of a plastic bottle because it's not a reusable container.
She's four and a half.
Coca-Cola, official soft drink of NASCAR, you know,
they sell beverages in plastic bottles.
So I actually explained to her, I said, you know, look,
you know, you can't always have a reusable container.
And she just looked at me like I was crazy, right?
Because in her school, they're using reusable containers all
the time and they've actually cut their --
they've cut their trash bill by 80% in her preschool as a result
of reusable containers.
So waste, renewable energy, you know, and power generation.
Brandon Igdalsky, who is here in the front row, I mean,
we should actually applaud Brandon,
because he has the largest renewable energy plant of any
sport stadium in the world at Pocono Raceway.
Three megawatts of power, put it in on a retired parking lot.
The trees were gone anyway.
You know, 25 acres of solar panels across the street
from the track.
I mean, four years ago, are you kidding me?
Nobody would have thought that was even remotely possible,
let alone plausible.
So, you know, Brandon, thank you, you know.
In the area of waste, you know, Drew Patey is here
from Safety-Kleen.
He'll be on the panel later.
You know, NASCAR, with Drew and with Safety-Kleen,
were doing green way before it was popular or something of a
national focus.
200,000 gallons of automotive fluids per year are recycled,
through either re-refining technology that Safety-Kleen
has, which is absolutely best in class and world leading.
I mean, that's something that you come into our garage and you
look around, we're racing our cars.
But the stuff that goes into racing those cars isn't --
it isn't going on the trash heap.
It's all getting recycled.
And it's first principle science that makes that all possible.
So it's really profound, actually.
And then from the standpoint of emissions, you know,
our American ethanol program, that's very high tech, you know,
with growth energy and the National Corn Growers
Association and Green Plains Renewable Energy and Novozymes
and, you know, the companies that are involved in
that platform.
I mean, you know, making corn ethanol is not, you know,
stirring ethanol in a pot.
It's -- it is high tech science in our country and it's
something that creates real white collar,
professional jobs in the heartland that people can grow
up in a small town in the Midwest now,
go off to a fancy college on the coast,
come back and have a lifetime of professional employment back
where they grew up because of ethanol.
And it's not -- it's not anything other than really just
absolute rocket science as a result.
So that's high tech.
Low tech, we plant trees, which I'm sure other folks
do, as well.
So initiatives across the board.
Jon Powers: Thanks.
And Bob, from, you know, being in first place,
that's probably a nice way to help engage with your fans.
Is there anything specific the Pirates are doing to help bring
this to folks' attention?
Bob Nutting: Yeah, I think what we do is we're all about families,
and in Pittsburgh, both at the Pirates,
also at your resort at Seven Springs.
And so really try to find ways to engage an entire family,
engage kids.
And so whether it's something like a direct outreach program
that players can come, whether it's talking to schools,
whether it's PSAs during and before every game,
those are very simple, very direct methods for outreach.
Building, we built a green demonstration field in
Pittsburgh for a youth baseball group.
So, you know, very innovative drainage systems,
very innovative -- a rain garden,
interpretive signs that we partnered with Western
Pennsylvania Conservancy.
So using it as a hands-on example,
something kids love to do, get outside, play baseball,
expose to healthy activity, but at the same time use it as a
demonstration of we can have great green examples that you
can physically touch hands-on.
And you're right, that the youth is so tuned in,
it's something they expect.
They're not impressed that we're not sending cans to the
landfill anymore.
Of course you're not sending cans to the landfill.
It's not obvious.
Jon Powers: Right.
Bob Nutting: But I think where they do get excited is when we see some of
those innovative, hands-on, very tangible
youth-focused activities.
Jon Powers: Excellent.
And Mike, as a diehard Sabers fan,
you've ripped my heart out on numerous occasions.
But I'd love to ask what you sort of see in the NHL in
that community.
Mike Richter: Well, I'm glad I could help you with that one, Jon.
You know, the environmental movement is all
about efficiency.
It's about eliminating waste in whatever form,
whether it's recycling cans or having a car that goes faster.
And so is sports.
If I'm a faster runner than Jon, I get to the ball first.
That's what sports is.
And so it mirrors so well.
And I think one of the things we're looking at with buildings
themselves -- and Brandon and I had this discussion last year
when we first met -- I mean, it's an amazing thing
that he did.
But what you're trying do is make these buildings as
efficient as the athletes that use them.
I mean, it's incredible.
And the irony, if you have these highly tuned athletes,
they sleep, they drink, they eat very specifically,
and they're playing in a building that may have been
designed 100 years ago, the same technologies, that is,
and it's belching out oil or whatever it is.
And so you're starting to bring the sports facilities up to the
same level of technology and innovation as the athletes that
are using them.
I think specifically to the question what is the NHL
trying to do.
I think the really big message that you have to have out there
is that the environment is not about the spotted owl,
it is not about trees, it's about people.
And so when you're talking about efficiency,
you're talking about buildings that perform better,
that feel better, that save you money.
Programs that eliminate waste, save money.
You know, we'll get into some of the specific programs in
a minute.
But what the NHL has done is actually helped out
the community.
They said, oh, that's a green program,
but it ends up feeding people because it's saving food waste
or restoring water or whatever it is,
it has to be about people, not just trees and the birds.
And I think that's a really important message to
get out there.
Because these aren't just little benefits.
They are the main benefits of environmental efficiency.
Allen Hershkowitz: Great.
So I'm going to ask the next two questions.
This question has to do with the business side of this issue.
I remember about four years ago, Gary Bettman,
the Commissioner of the NHL, asked me to lead a discussion at
the Board of Governors meeting of the NHL.
And I remember I was terrified thinking, you know,
hockey team owners, what does, you know,
an environmentalist from New York City have to share with
hockey team owners from around the country.
Turned out to be one of the most wonderful discussions in my
career that I ever engaged in.
These folks got it.
They saw the opportunity for not only cost savings,
but also for great branding and, frankly, a lot of them,
most of them, very oriented towards this particular cause.
So what I want to ask the panel is,
tell us about your business partners embrace.
How did you communicate this to the many stakeholders?
Obviously you own the team.
I'm talking to Bob Nutting now.
You still have to convince people.
How have your vendors, your business partners,
your sponsors, your employees.
Tell us about -- and I'd like this from everybody,
but let's start with Bob Nutting --
tell us about how it was received in your organization.
Bob Nutting: And perfect.
And I think, Allen, as you remember, I mean,
let me start with the cultural transformation at the company
and the organization, because we did not have built into our DNA
at all an awareness of sustainability and awareness of
an environmentally responsible lifestyle.
And so we did, with your help and with NRDC,
we convened a meeting and a group across our
entire platform.
So we brought our newspaper publishers in,
we brought our magazine publishers in,
Mother Earth News, our publisher there,
Brian Welch is a real thought leader in this space,
brought him in with our key executives at the baseball team
and also with our key executives at the resort company,
and sort of pushed them all into a room together for a
couple of days.
My role there was to make it crystal clear that an
organizational priority was going to be a fresh look in
environmental sustainability, a fresh look at how do we need to
behave and act differently.
What was really exciting to me was,
and Allen was a part of driving that discussion,
as we looked at the biggest opportunity areas, biggest risk,
biggest problems throughout the platform,
the number of common themes that came out and allowed us to focus
on conservation, allowed us to focus on recycling,
allowed us to focus on building awareness.
And each one of the divisions was able to grab ahold of
different parts and activate it in different ways.
But having a common organizational vision made a
huge impact.
And what I really saw was the ability for the employees to
then bubble up.
Once they knew it was something that we valued,
the amount of input, the amount of ideas,
the number of individual tactical thoughts, you know,
very few of those came from organizational direction.
What became was we're allowed to do it, we have a mission,
and the number of tactical ideas, oh,
here's how we can solve this problem better.
Here's how we can make our snow making system at a ski resort
much more effective by repurposing a solar stirrer that
was used in our sewage waste plant.
We run a plant there.
And by doing some repurposing, the amount of creativity
unleashed inside the organization,
that was maybe one of the most gratifying parts.
As you build that level of enthusiasm,
as you walk into a room, as we moved from literally millions of
pieces of Styrofoam at Seven Springs and at the ballpark,
to sustainable cups, we had a new corn cup that looked a lot
like Styrofoam and we had the CEO of the resort,
president of the baseball team and a couple of our publishers,
and Frank Coonley, our president,
brought out these cups, and people weren't going
to touch them.
It was like giving you a plastic bottle.
So there's no way in the world culturally,
this is no longer acceptable in this organization.
And Frank said, oh, no, here's our new corn cup,
and everybody relaxed, and afraid I was going to walk
into the room.
But I think that simply changing the expectation inside an
organization is what allowed us to move the needle.
Just as you've talked about the commissioner, you know,
you set the expectation.
People want to be able to behave responsibly.
You have to give them permission and build that organization that
it's accepted and expected every day.
Allen Hershkowitz: Mike Richter.
Mike Richter: Um --
Allen Hershkowitz: I will repeat the question.
Only because I was asked to do so for our TV audience,
not just Bob Nutting confused us, which you didn't.
So tell us about how the NHL, I mean 30 plus teams,
thousands of employees, how did you mobilize your partners?
What was their reaction?
The employees, the operators of the arenas, sponsors, vendors?
Mike Richter: Well, I would like to say I didn't mobilize them.
I certainly didn't.
I think it really came from Commissioner Bettman.
As you said in some of those meetings, there's 30 teams.
You can't just from on high say, this is what we're doing.
These are individual people with individual companies.
Just as Bob said, that he set a mandate for these guys and they
try to follow it, Commissioner Bettman can do that.
But it's very difficult because these thirty teams are in
geographically different locations,
different energy price, different climate,
all kinds of things cultural and physical.
So I think one of the most important things that we're
doing at the NHL is getting a baseline testing of what your
energy, what your waste is and what your water use is.
And then you can start to see what the best practices are.
So if Bob at the Pittsburgh Pirates is doing something very
creative with water, then the New York Rangers can say, wow,
that's something that we can employ.
Or maybe that doesn't work for us but we'll try a waste
recycling program from somewhere else.
Very important.
If you can't measure it, you don't know how to really fix it,
number one.
But I think it does come, you know,
to an extent from that leadership at the top.
When NHL started their Food Recovery Program --
this is a really enormous thing.
Fifteen of the leagues teams signed up right away.
That's kind of just like look, I buy your argument,
I want to do this.
Fifteen -- now it's all 30 are participating.
So it really does have clout.
You have to have somebody because there's a lot of inertia
out there and there's a lot of fear.
And, you know, you're at a meeting trying to run
a business.
This is the National Hockey League, it's not NRDC.
And they want to actually move their business along.
How can we do it and help the environment?
So I think teams are learning, but it has to come from
that leadership.
Allen Hershkowitz: Mike Lynch, how has NASCAR communicated its embrace of
environmental stewardship to it's business partners?
Mike Lynch: I mean, that actually -- another way we've been asked that
question is what was the biggest challenge that we had in this
which is totally related to this.
The first six months for us with NASCAR Green were by far the
most challenging because we announced that it was
an initiative.
And NASCAR stakeholdership, which is literally very similar,
Mike, to what you were saying, it's a stakeholdership and
an ecosystem.
It's not a command/control situation.
So you have to be careful what you ask for.
So literally -- and this is a stakeholdership that's
incredibly passionate like the fans are,
incredibly well intentioned.
And the energy is just enormous.
So when NASCAR Green was announced,
the first impulse was to do things.
And actually, we had to compete with that impulse to say,
everybody please wait.
And that first six months where we made the rounds with all of
the major stakeholders, broadcast partners,
racetrack owners, race team owners, drivers,
all the major sponsors, manufacturer partners,
everybody, to say what do you think,
and actually that was where the real opportunities came from.
Because what we immediately figured out,
which really was obvious from the start quite frankly because
of what these companies were doing, you know,
a company like Coca-Cola building and growing their
global beverage business by 5-plus percent per year while
reducing their environmental impact, that is so hard to do.
Yet, they've been doing it for a decade.
So what we were able to do with Coca-Cola was learn an enormous
amount from them, learn an enormous amount from
Safety-Kleen, learn an enormous amount from 3M, you know,
from the partners who were in the sport who've had
sustainability in their business already and then think about,
okay, how can we apply what they're doing from literally a
technology or solution standpoint in ways --
And really the way we thought about it was that measurably
impact, so we can back it up with numbers and it's very real,
but then also it matters.
Back to your point, Allen, which is you can have all the
addressing environmental impact in the world in terms of first
principle science and being very smart.
But if it resonates at the same time, then you've got something.
So when Coca-Cola recycling stepped up and said hey,
we've got this business unit in recycling, you know,
plastic cans, you name it, and all the impact that that has and
we've being doing it for years we would like to get in the
campgrounds with you -- the largest campground in the United
States on any given weekend is the NASCAR race.
It's a small Midwestern town that gets together with a curb
side recycling opportunity.
And then, you know, go figure.
You've got -- I think unprecedented.
You've got a soft drink company in Coca-Cola and a beer company
in Coors working together on recycling?
You know, these are -- I mean, those are different
products, right?
But the solutions behind it that Coca-Cola developed in their
business over the years in terms of just high efficiency
recycling, very smart repurposing of the material,
their presence in those recyclable material markets at a
time when those markets were in chaos --
2008, 2009, 2010, you guys all remember the news reports,
right, of cardboard boxes stacking up at the ports because
there was no export market for them because the world economy
had stopped, right.
In the context of all of that, we were able to work with folks
like Coca-Cola to really do this in a smart way that mattered
to the fans.
But the first six months was all about thinking and talking and
making the rounds and, by all means, don't do anything.
And that was, by far, the hardest time in this.
Allen Hershkowitz: So listening to the answers, I'm reminded of the saying that an
organization is the shadow of its leadership.
I know this is true.
Commissioner Selig at Major League Baseball,
David Stern at the NBA, Billy Jean King at the USTA,
Gary Bettman of course at the National Hockey League,
Roger Goodell.
When the leadership embraces this and it trickles down and
everybody pays attention.
So now I'm going to give you a lob for you to hit out
of the park.
I couldn't resist saying that.
My favorite initiative in all the sports work we're doing is
the measurement implementation that has been implemented by
Major League Baseball, by the National Basketball Association,
by the National Hockey League.
These leagues are now measuring energy use, water use,
waste generation recycling, and paper consumption.
And it's not seamless.
It's evolving.
There's work in implementation, implementation barriers.
But all of these major leagues have embraced the idea
of measurement.
And in my 30 years of work, I know that if you measure,
you figure out a way to improve.
I don't even ask people to change anymore.
I just say, let's measure, because I know what's going to
follow is some kind of beneficial change.
That's my favorite.
So what I want to know -- and this is the easy one.
What are you particularly most proud of?
What initiative do you -- when people say, what are you doing
to green your organization, tell me about your work,
what do you feel most proud of?
Let's start with Bob Nutting.
Bob Nutting: Allen, if it's all right, I'm going to tie into your measuring
because, as a business person I deeply believe you do get what
you measure at the end of the day.
And Baseball Commissioner Selig has been incredibly effective
creating that, John McHale, incredibly effective at building
that mechanism.
But what it has played to and the reason it's been so
effective and helped really light up our employees --
you know, Mike as you talk about sports being about performance,
sports is really about competition.
And watching our team measure their diversion rate against
Seattle, against San Francisco --
Allen Hershkowitz: That's tough.
That's tough.
Bob Nutting: But we moved from 0 to 21 to 43, last year at 64.
We're at 67% this month.
These guys know it.
They're watching it.
They're reporting to me every month.
And they're also reporting where do we stand,
because they're extraordinarily competitive people.
That's what sports is about.
And I think that trying to find that way to ignite the
competitive nature -- you know, there's not a person in
Pittsburgh who doesn't know we're now tied right now with
Cincinnati and we need to win the games this weekend.
There's not a person in the organization on the
sustainability side that doesn't know where our diversion rate
is, where we're moving it.
And your insight in how do we measure,
how do we drive the excitement and make it something that
engages at a level that they understand is --
certainly understand resource reduction,
but understanding that competitive element within the
leagues and as baseball becomes the greenest league and a
competition between them which frankly,
Allen you and NRDC could foster, that really drives people's
excitement, energy level.
And it's been fun to watch.
Allen Hershkowitz: Mike Richter?
Mike Richter: I think that competition is great among the teams
and the leagues.
Obviously, I think it's amazing because I think baseball is one
of the first that you had even discussed.
And then the NHL tries to leapfrog that,
and we keep getting best practices.
I think a simple program, along with the measurement,
and I think great things will come of a that.
Because we're really talking about the building envelope and
a lot of the efficiency there.
So I think there's going to be huge strides coming on the heels
of that measurement once that data is fully collected.
But one that really just interests me is the Food
Donation Program.
So you think of an event, not as big as baseball but Madison
Square Garden for instance.
Close to 20,000 people come to a game.
How many hot dogs, how many burgers,
how many whatever did they make that has been prepared and
is untouched?
And where does it go?
It's thrown away and ends up in a landfill throwing off methane
gas somewhere.
So a couple things happen.
A, it's an environmental problem.
There's like 800 trucks go out of Manhattan every night to dump
their trash.
A big part of it is coming from these big companies.
So, you know, you're filling up a landfill,
and it's expensive as heck to do it.
So what the NHL has done is they're taking their prepared
unused food and giving it to food banks.
And, to date, I think it's somewhere around the order of
200 tons has been kept out of landfills and 300,000 meals have
been created by this.
I mean, this is not just that you're taking them out
of landfills.
You're actually feeding needy people.
So back to that point, it's measurable because you can see
the tonnage.
So that's a great thing.
It's avoided cost.
So it's paying for itself and then some.
And it's helping who?
Not just the environment but people.
People are getting free meals.
I mean, if you want to call a big Sabrett hot dog a free
meal, you can.
But this is a big, big deal.
So I think that kind of elegance of turning what was a waste
product into something that is productive for society is
a great thing.
Another one is the water program the NHL has that came out and
said, look, for every goal that's scored,
we're going to donate a thousand gallons of water to streams that
are in need.
And so they're really kind of -- how do you say,
rewatering the streams.
Diverted streams are a big problem, especially in the West.
Hockey is so dependent upon water.
The games started on frozen lakes and rivers.
So last year, there's 6700 goals scored in the NHL, times 1,000
gallons of water that will be stored into these riverbeds.
So it's a really interesting kind of measurable on the
community level program.
And more, and I think bigger ones,
will come as we get the whole energy envelope from
the building.
So very excited.
And it will stay with those kind of measurable initiatives.
Allen Hershkowitz: Those are really important.
I mean, we throw out a hundred billion pounds of food in this
country every year as waste.
100 billion pounds.
98% of it goes into landfills, is not composted.
If we recovered just 5% of that food,
we could feed 20 million people.
Food waste is a big issue.
And I really want to applaud the NHL for what you're doing there.
And of course water scarcity, you know, Colorado river --
I don't want to get into that.
Mike Lynch?
Mike Lynch: I'll just describe bookends on this in terms of pride
for the sport.
When we were doing the testing for American Ethanol,
for Sunoco Green E-15, American Grown American Made ethanol
blend, it was a serious effort.
And actually, it was one that involved --
it's probably one of the larger efforts that's ever been done
with confidentiality around it where there wasn't leak.
Probably 600 people were involved between the engine
builders and the race teams and our competition group
and everyone.
And the thing about it was the pride aspect of it was this is
an American product that increases performance and then
the competitive aspect came out in the race teams right there,
which was literally -- when the engine guys figured out that
there was because of the higher octane as a result there was
more performance in there, the first thing they were thinking
about, aside from the fact we wanted to make sure it was going
to work, was getting more.
I want to get more.
I want to figure out, I want to apply my scientific knowledge
and my understanding of engineering to getting more
performance out of that American grown,
American made technology and green.
So being able to say that here today to you folks is an
enormous sense of pride for our industry because it's something
that really puts reality and practicality and importance
around what we're all talking about today.
Then on the other end of the spectrum of things,
me just personally, one of the most touching events that I've
ever been to in my life was Texas Motor Speedway,
fall of 2010, their tree planting event.
So we do ten trees for every green flag that drops at a race.
So we actually tie it to our competition.
On average, we have about ten green flags between the start of
the race and cautions and all of that.
It's about 100 trees.
These is not a seedling program for us.
These are overhead trees that are going to live their life.
They're neutralize the carbon from a car basically, you know,
one ton stored over the life span, et cetera.
But when those trees were planted in Fort Worth in an
economically disadvantaged area of Fort Worth at a 6th grade
magnet school as part of an agronomy park creation on the
grounds of the school where the President --
Eddie Gossage, Jr., was given essentially a mural that was
signed by all 600 kids in the school saying thank you.
And they put on a play and said thank you for impacting the
environment in a positive way, thank you for including us,
and we love the sport and we're proud.
That was just something -- talk about a life nurturing event.
We do that all across the country now in 25 race markets.
That's real pride in something that we really care about.
And it actually has a measurable impact on things too.
Allen Hershkowitz: My favorite NASCAR is the solar panels at Pocono.
Mike Lynch: Yeah.
Allen Hershkowitz: Jon Powers?
Jon Powers: Thanks, Allen.
Allen Hershkowitz: Could we do a time check by the way?
Speaker: We're good.
Allen Hershkowitz: Good.
Jon Powers: I was just going to remind everyone who's watching online,
or if you're tweeting from here, the hashtag is #GreenSports.
I don't know if we have any questions from Twitter,
but let me open this up to the audience to see if there's any
questions out here for our panel.
Allen Hershkowitz: We have more.
Leilani Münter: As you know, (inaudible).
Allen Hershkowitz: That's a NASCAR driver, by the way.
That's a NASCAR driver.
Leilani Münter: My question is -- (inaudible).
When do you estimate that it's possible that NASCAR could be
running 100% biofuel?
Mike Lynch: So the question is, all right, so we're running 15% ethanol in
the race cars now.
When can we expect 100?
This is another -- it's a great question because it focuses in
on relevance.
So folks in this room, you guys being sort of close to this
general area, you probably know what's going on out there in
the marketplace.
You go and fill up at the pump today,
you get on average about 7.5% ethanol in your tank.
The blend wall is 10.
That's sort of the maximum kind of mandate nationally.
EPA is a huge aspect of that as far as the rationale for it and
the backdrop for it and the testing of it in the car fleet
on our streets.
So E-15 in the marketplace has been approved for cars ten
years older/younger.
All good.
Put it in, you get higher octane, you have a cleaner fuel.
Bingo, right?
That's what our program is about.
We're showing everybody, the 300 million people,
our fellow Americans, that you can put 15% ethanol,
you can run it at 850 horsepower in the most demanding conditions
in the world with drivers who, if it didn't work better,
would sure tell you.
But in fact what they say is, oh yeah.
When Dale Earnhart Jr. says that it was a seamless transition to
American ethanol at the Daytona 500 in 2011, well guess what.
Sixty-seven million people all of a sudden care
about that, right.
So when Dale says it, it means something.
When Jimmy says it, it means something, right?
So it's that relevance.
And this is a struggle that's out there in our marketplace
right now, where the ethanol industry is pushing toward E-15.
And we're there for them, right?
We're there for them with Sunoco Green E-15.
We're there for them to show, weekend, week out, this weekend,
next weekend, the weekend after that,
that 15% ethanol is in that car and it's performing great.
It will be just fine in your streetcar too.
And just as a factual matter, we didn't have to change
hardly anything.
We tweaked the car just slightly in order to just be compatible
and whatever.
But there was really nothing to do.
Same for you if your car is ten years older or younger.
And if it's older than that, it's probably okay too,
on average with some exceptions.
You want to be attentive to it.
You know, 100% biofuel, if 100% biofuel were in the marketplace
and that was relevant on the street,
they're down the block and you're going to fill up,
of course we would be talking to the ethanol industry and to
Sunoco about it.
Allen Hershkowitz: Jon Powers, let me just say, that's an important question
because it gets to -- you know, we have this infrastructure that
has been built up for hundreds of years that's moving in a
particular direction.
It's even been subsidized.
And it continues to be subsidized,
moving in a particular direction that has impacted
the environment.
Turning that ship around is going to take many years.
So like the NHL program, the MLB program,
we said let's talk about the next ten years, you know,
and how we could do better.
We don't even talk about best.
Jon Powers: And I think there's some real synergies here instead of what
we're doing in the federal government.
There's an effort at the Department Of Energy called
Clean Cities where they're looking at how to help build up
some of that infrastructure.
We talked about earlier today that the Navy is putting an
entire fleet out there, including jets on a 50/50 blend
of biofuels and the military's version of JP-8.
Mike, were going to follow up and introduce you to some of the
Navy scientists, the folks that NASCAR can get connected because
there is a synergy there in what we're doing.
I think the President has put some real investment and
emphasis in that infrastructure so we can continue to move the
country forward in that direction.
And thanks to Leilani for the question.
Leilani was a great role model to have out at the race in
Kansas City.
We had not only a NASCAR driver, a female driver and an Admiral
sit there signing autographs for about three days straight.
It was quite an endurance test for you.
Allen Hershkowitz: We do have more questions to ask from the podium here.
But if there's any other question -- sir?
Audience Member: Jack -- (inaudible) I would like to ask (inaudible) how you are
engaging or plan to engage the players, drivers,
professional athletes in your respective initiatives.
Allen Hershkowitz: Three professional athletes came out of that family.
I don't know how that happened.
That's just unbelievable.
Jon Powers: Just to repeat the question for the folks on line,
he asked how the leagues plan to engage the players.
Bob Nutting: We certainly use the players as a part of our direct outreach.
Again, I think as you look at players as some of the great
role models that kids are looking up to,
it's important they see them both modeling good behavior but
also talking about it.
So in our PSAs, in our end game, in our events,
we are always engaging the star power to get out and drive
that awareness.
Just as you said, you know, if a driver,
if a player comes out and makes a strong statement,
if James McDonald who loves to fish is seen out with a trout,
catch and release, if he's out there saying the environment is
important, people are listening.
And the other thing that's been very interesting and gratifying,
they want to.
They believe it.
They're the generation that are very tuned in.
And frankly, they're going to begin pushing us to drive to
higher levels.
I think that's critically important.
Jon Powers: And Mike, as a hall of fame player yourself?
Michael Richter: Well, actually that's a really good point.
Our game is very close to being outdoors.
The game was started kind in Canada on the frozen ponds.
Most of the guys go back in the summer and they fish and
they work out.
They're very close to land.
A lot of hunters, a lot of demographics that really need to
get this message out.
And they understand the connection between their
environment and their quality of life.
Interesting thing, I don't know if the NHL as a group needs to
say, you players must do this because both are
leading right now.
I think it was three years ago the David Suzuki Foundation had
-- there was no mandate.
They said, would you guys like to go carbon neutral on your
travel this year?
Eighty-two games before the playoffs start,
you're traveling all over.
Many environmentalists look at sports as a real drag.
And instead you're kind of turning this whole equation
around and saying, look, we can be the leaders in this rather
than something kind of superfluous and burning a
lot of fuel.
So 500 of the 700 NHL players, not because there was a mandate
from the NHL, but took it on their own to take a check out of
their own wallet and say I'm going to go carbon
neutral this year.
They bought carbon credits, which, you know,
you can say is just more window dressing.
But this is -- this was a pretty interesting initiative.
They started that.
Nobody told them to do it.
So I think a lot of the players, across all the sports that I
found -- and you'll hear from Ovie later on today.
They get this.
They get it.
They're close to the land.
Health and the environment intersect.
They'll be leading.
They don't need anybody to tell them to.
Jon Powers: That's great.
Mike Lynch: In NASCAR in our sport, there's the hard work behind the scenes
around this, I'll just explain very briefly,
and then that there's what you see on TV.
And the hard work behind it is literally when we launch --
and you guys probably do something very similar where we
spend a lot of time at the racetrack.
When we're launching a new initiative,
whatever it is in green, the FAQs around it,
the facts around it, the basics, not biased right.
Right down the middle, just the facts.
We get out there into our industry with the drivers and
owners in all three national series for sure and share the
information with them so that they can speak on behalf of it
in their own words if asked.
And that's -- you can imagine.
I mean, we've got -- you're talking about a lot of people
and a lot of people you have to spend real quality time with in
order to kind of get some of this stuff across because it's
complicated, right?
I mean something as mundane on the surface as recycling a
plastic bottle actually is a very profound technical
challenge in helping folks understand so they can comment.
Then there's what we actually are able to do in terms of real
engagement to get that message out there so that in fact you
can move the perception around green of 67 million people in
four years which I think is unprecedented.
And that's, you know Public Service Announcements that ten
million viewers see each week.
It still gives me chills a little bit when it starts and
says, you know, can a sport change the way you think about
the environment?
And then you see Ryan Newman standing on his farmland and
then Mack Kenseth, Brad Keselowski, et cetera; right?
And we run those every weekend to get that message out from the
voice of the drivers.
And then the other thing that happens too is, you know,
a racetrack is kind of a busy place and there's reporters
all over.
They stop a driver or owner and ask them about American Ethanol,
ask a Coca-Cola family driver about the Coca-Cola recycling.
The beauty of it is they speak in their own words and it comes
across as it should which is genuine.
And it comes -- I'll share a little anecdote with you.
When we were doing a launch of something,
and we were doing a video.
Mike Skinner, one of the real historic figures,
particularly in our truck series,
he drove in the cup level as well.
He's a guy who people really look up to in the sport.
I was working with them.
I said, hey, you know, here's what this is about and
going through it.
And he finally stopped me and said, wait a minute,
you trying to tell me what to say?
And in all honesty, I said, yeah, I kind of am.
And he said, no, I'm good.
I'm good.
And he was fantastic.
Because it was in his own words from his own perspective.
And the thing about our athletes,
our fans know they will never say anything they don't believe.
So when you get there with that, it has so much power.
I mean, that's an awesome question actually.
Jon Powers: We do have some questions in from Twitter.
So I would like to ask one from Katie Meyers.
And thanks you so much for submitting it.
"So how do you see the job industry expanding from the
"efforts in green sports?"
So what opportunities in the job sector may be out there?
Allen Hershkowitz: Why don't we start with Bob Nutting?
Bob Nutting: Well, thanks.
I think in terms of the job industry,
what we really need are people who are aware, who are thinking,
who are tuned in, and who are creative and innovative because
everyday there are new opportunities that come up.
And just as we talked about it at the ski resort,
water usage is a major issue.
And what we need are people who are thinking deeply and
innovatively and not afraid to say,
we have a better opportunity here.
Frankly, whether it's the composting,
whether it's the food outreach, Rock and Wrap It Up!
what we do.
I think those are all pieces that take a tremendous amount of
time, energy engagement.
And that's what I see, at least on the employee side,
as our partners really driving it forward.
Jon Powers: Do you see any, sort of, exciting innovations come from
some of your employees?
Bob Nutting: All of our innovations come from our employees.
We never have good ideas in the corporate office.
Our job is to set a clear vision and then hire people and enable
them to launch and go forward.
And at the end of the day, my job is to measure and
hold accountable.
And frankly, that's the structure that we use,
rather it's building a championship baseball club,
whether it's a great publishing company,
or within the green initiatives.
When people understand where they're headed but are empowered
to be able to drive forward with creativity,
innovative on their own, knowing at the end of the day they're
going to be held accountable and measured and celebrated --
and if I can just divert for a minute.
We were talking about the question of 100% versus 15%.
Allen, one of the things that you really taught me that I
think is important for this room is to be willing to celebrate
the small successes.
We cannot all do everything.
We will not be perfect.
We do a lot of stuff wrong everyday.
But at the same time, if we're conscious, if we move forward,
and if we are willing in this kind of a forum to celebrate the
successes -- you know, if you change one light bulb,
that's one light bulb that got changed.
If you convert, whether it's toilet paper or whether it's
cups, if you take one simple step forward and we celebrate
those, that's where you start to drive those million
good decisions.
And if we're all held to the standard of we didn't use 100%
therefore we failed, while we should demonstrate leadership
and we should be out on the innovative edge and baseball
should help lead the way on the Civil Rights Movement with
Jackie Robinson -- you need to be a leader and innovator.
But if we can't celebrate the small steps along the way,
we're losing the really important part of that message.
Jon Powers: Mike, as someone who's now gone sort of on the private equity
side and is looking to invest in businesses that are doing this,
do you see some opportunities growing from the efforts in
the industry?
Michael Richter: Yes.
It's enormous.
A lot of the technology is available.
It exists.
We'll continue to innovate and we need to.
But we haven't deployed to the extent that we're capable all
the existing technologies.
The military is doing incredible work.
NASCAR, that's the whole thing.
That's why we're here.
We're trying to get this in the consciousness of people to
recognize that there are solutions.
Not just problems, they're solutions here.
And when that scale gets large enough,
the demand will be there.
You have solar integrators.
You have people that can sell American made biofuels.
The capability is there.
The demand needs to be there.
The only way you get demand is get people aware.
And that's where sports comes in.
So if you're asking about green jobs,
they're just waiting to be asked to be employed basically.
I know in my current job now I try to finance a lot of this
stuff because that is the big hurdle.
But that scale will continue to go, drive down prices,
and really make this a larger part of our energy mix and our
waste and how we just look at everything,
from sports to regular old business.
Allen Hershkowitz: I would like to come at this from another side.
You know, we're celebrating here.
This is a great affirmation of our work.
But this is really the beginning.
There's a lot of -- we all know, those of us who work in this,
we know there's a lot of work that needs to be done.
What I would like to know from the panel is what do you hope to
accomplish in your greening initiatives that you have not
yet been able to do?
And what kind of barriers are you encountering?
I know, for those of us in the environmental community,
we're kind of frustrated that we see so many subsidies going to
environmentally harmful activities.
The playing field is just not level,
which is one of the reasons why we just admire baseball and
football, hockey, basketball, tennis' efforts to overcome that
bias in the marketplace and still figure out how to find
cost competitive products.
Tell us about what you want to accomplish,
haven't been able to accomplish, what kind of barriers
you're encountering?
Bob Nutting?
Bob Nutting: I think that, again, where we're most pleased is what we've been
able to do internally.
But the real opportunity that baseball has and the real
opportunity that Commissioner Selig and Jon McHale have
recognized is building that awareness and getting other
people moving forward.
And so, you know, as you said, the footprint of PNC Park is
limited in terms of our actual resource usage,
in terms of our actual ability to move our needle internally.
We're working very hard to do that appropriately.
Where we have an unlimited ability --
and everyone on the panel has an unlimited ability to impact is
in using that platform to drive awareness and attention to,
in my case, try to find business sensitive practices that make
environmental sense and also make economic sense is something
that I can then take to, whether it's our corporate partners,
whether it's our friends in the business world to say this is an
economically sustainable practice as well.
And I think that, as we start to help move the needle,
the great opportunity we have going forward and the
frustration is it never goes as fast as you need it to.
We try to celebrate the successes as we do.
But if we can help be that catalyst,
I think that's the long-term win.
Just as NRDC and Allen you were for us to light that spark.
If we can help light that spark ten more places and then ten
more places, that's where the real impact happens.
Allen Hershkowitz: Mike Lynch, so other than not being able to get is 100%
biofuels, what do you want to do that you've not been able to?
What kind of barriers do you see in the way of getting you there?
Mike Lynch: Two quick comments and then a quick answer.
In the system -- so this is, again,
using the platform in order to have real impact in the world.
In the United States, moving from 10% ethanol to 15% ethanol
in the marketplace, it's simple.
It's one million jobs will be created as a result.
Full stop.
That's pretty straightforward.
In the world where we're heading --
well, actually in the ethanol industry,
our partner Growth Energy, Emmetsburg,
Iowa is going to be the epicenter of biofuels next year
when they launch the largest cellulosic ethanol plant in the
world, making ethanol out of corncobs and leaves,
so waste products.
And it's going to be a remarkable story,
an American in Iowa.
In Tampa, Florida, our most recent new NASCAR Green partner,
Creative Recycling Systems, many of you maybe never heard of
them, private equity funded venture capital funded company
-- we spend a lot of time with private equity and
venture capital.
Mike, we got to keep in touch actually.
And that's where we're heeding now.
We've got our legs under us in this now.
We were patient.
We were prudent.
We were very careful.
The industry was very, very cautious in this whole thing.
Pushing the innovation envelope, you're going to hear
announcements from us around new technologies that are coming
into the sport in basic infrastructure aspects as well
as on the competition side having to do with general
innovation in the product and general innovation in support of
the sport, and particularly in the area of green
and sustainability.
Companies that you haven't heard of that are ready for prime time
and are great small American companies that have huge
potential with brand new technologies,
that's where we're heading, is to things that are
counterintuitive, new, but also are ready in terms of making
business sense and really do work.
That's where we're heading.
Allen Hershkowitz: Mike, what does the NHL want to accomplish that you
haven't done?
Michael Richter: I think that the frustration comes and the hurdle is just
that the entrenched way of doing things is there.
There's a lot of inertia.
And we've made incredible strides as a nation, as a world,
and as the sports industry.
But we're not really keeping up as much as we want to with a lot
of the problems.
They're accelerating.
So I think the frustration comes in how quickly can you
deploy this stuff.
And I think what Michael talked about earlier is the
absolute key.
It's got to be measurable ecologically.
I mean it really has to make an impact.
It's got to incorporate people.
But performance is the biggest thing.
And when you have the U.S. military and you have something
as performance oriented as NASCAR deploying these
technologies, it really, it changes minds.
It changes behavior.
And that is kind of the key.
There's a big mental hurdle that says, this is all great.
And it's a feel good story.
But does it really work?
If the U.S. military can use it and someone like NASCAR that's
all about performance -- I think that people will buy green
products if they're the same price.
But they won't buy them if they don't work as well.
If your cleaning product doesn't work or your car doesn't run as
fast or you can't defend your country as well,
you just don't use them.
And that's the story that I think is the most important one
to get out.
Mike Lynch: If you guys don't mind, if I can just add one quick thing.
So Creative Recycling Systems and Sprint.
Sprint has recycled 30 million cell phones in the
past ten years.
National defense and environmental impact.
Rare earth elements and precious metals and those materials that
are in complex electronic products,
that's what Creative Recycling Systems recycles.
That's what Sprint puts back in the system.
Rare earth elements, if we get them out of our used products,
we don't have to import rare earth elements.
85% of rare earth elements in the world come from China now.
Now, they're a good partner in that.
And it's all good.
But, you know, the extent to which we can diversify around
that, it's the same thing on the ethanol side.
Another percentage point here, another percentage point there.
It's just like diversifying your retirement portfolio.
It's the same deal.
And it's something that folks don't know.
In sports, rare earth elements?
I mean, can you name them?
The 17 rare earth elements, I can't name them.
But what we're going to do is we're going to help our fan base
understand why they're important.
And they can look up the list.
And then it coming from our country,
coming from cell phones that Sprint sells and brings back
into reuse, that's a huge deal that is really hard
to understand.
But we can use our platforms in order to make it understandable.
Allen Hershkowitz: So creative recycling is a recycler of electronic waste,
e-waste, which is the fastest growing and most contaminated
component of the municipal waste stream.
The NBA actually, at their Orlando All-Star Game last year,
affiliated with Creative and had an e-waste collection program.
Much of what's being said can be brought to the other leagues
also that are doing this kind of work.
We've got representatives of NASCAR, baseball,
and hockey here.
But the NBA and Major League Soccer and the U.S. Tennis
Association, they're all doing meaningful work.
Jon, you want to continue?
Jon Powers: Time for one more question.
I wanted to open it up to the audience.
Chris Bradley: My name is Chris Bradley.
I'm with BASF Corporation.
And picking up on what Bob was talking about,
celebrating successes, one of the issues that I've heard from
the leadership at sports venues is that,
while they have successful green initiatives at their venues,
they don't always want to promote it externally because
they don't want to seem like they're bragging.
I'll just respond to that.
If you don't promote your environmental programs and
benefits, who will?
And so to the panel, can you talk a little bit about your
experiences about overcoming this?
And when you're discussing and promoting the programs
externally with the public, do you have that concern that
you're bragging?
And is that keeping you back from doing some of your
public relations?
Michael Richter: I have not seen too many sports leagues have trouble bragging or
sports players.
I mean, I've got a ten-year-old boy who,
he'll brag every time he scores a goal.
I think you should be bragging.
This is something that needs to get out there.
And you have a platform.
And you must use it.
This is important for national security, for social justice,
for the environment, for so many quality of life issues.
This is vital.
This is very, very important for the future of our society.
So this is something -- I you wouldn't call it bragging.
I would say this is something that we're using best practices,
the best practices we know how to deploy right now.
And hopefully a year from now, another league or another team
or another individual uses better practices.
You need those bright spots.
I mean, how do you change the status quo?
Someone's doing something better.
Someone is more efficient.
Someone is using something that's more creative and
therefore better and they're going to take your market share.
Then you take it over.
And then someone leapfrogs that.
So I hope the NHL has the best program out there and then Major
League Baseball beats it.
And then NASCAR beats it.
And we try to beat them.
That's what competition is, where we started
this conversation.
That's why sports is fun to watch.
But we have winners and losers.
And, you know, we all are for the most part American here.
We like to see our country move in that direction.
And in our culture, sports is a huge mover.
So that bragging needs to happen.
Mike Lynch: You know, to be fair, I think we all can come up with examples
where there's a little bit of premature bragging that did
happen years back.
So in fact, it's all about how you promote and when
you promote.
You got to earn that ticket, really.
So I think the folks here at this table certainly
have done that.
More so in the sports world than in the entertainment world,
folks have really done that.
It's when you get the cart before the horse in this that
you really get yourself in a bad spot.
Fortunately though, folks have really learned from the
experiences that have happened in that and turned that around.
And it's all good.
From BASF, right?
So BASF, Do you folks know what BASF does?
Probably not, right?
On any specific name.
Diversified technology conglomerate.
All kinds of hugely impactful products and technologies and
solutions in the world.
Hard to identify.
What sports can do is bring those to life, really just say,
look, here's this BASF technology that makes the
world greener.
And this thing that helps us deliver this sports product to
you, how about that, right?
Makes it relevant, ties it right in.
And it's real and quantitative.
Putting green on a jersey, you better have done the work first.
Bob Nutting: I agree completely.
I think that picking up on that green washing fear --
I'm not so sure it's a fear of bragging because, you know,
these two at least didn't hesitate to brag.
Audience Member: (inaudible)
We don't want to seem like we're bragging.
Bob Nutting: In Pittsburgh, we have learned to be humble.
Michael Richter: So many reasons.
Bob Nutting: But in all seriousness, green washing is a real challenge
which is why finding the balance of celebrating your successes
but being very, very cautious --
one advantage we have -- and again, you know Bryan Welch,
publisher of Mother Earth News, real thought leader,
extraordinarily high standards.
So he can walk around our ballpark and find the 300 things
that we're not doing yet that we need to push forward on.
We need to find the right balance of we absolutely have an
institutional priority, we absolutely have changed the
culture of the organization, we absolutely are going to take it
seriously and move forward and use our platform to
build awareness.
But I think a certain amount of humility,
which is hard for sports, saying that we've got to do the work
first and we've got to recognize that there's a lot of work left
to be done.
That's the balance that is very hard to find.
So again, I think a certain amount of humility because if
you do go out and splash we're perfect, we finished,
immediately you've found the 50 things left along the side where
you can be criticized.
Celebrating progress, celebrating intent,
setting a real priority.
Those are things that, I think, really have made a tremendous
shift over the last few years.
And if there's anything that we can continue to do,
it's recognize great progress has been made in so many areas.
Still a lot of work left to be done.
But with a clear goal in mind, small steps going forward,
eventually, we really do change the way people live and think
and inhabit this planet.
And that's going to make a real difference at the end
of the day.
Jon Powers: Bob, I think that's a really important point.
You know, I started off today talking about leadership
by example.
And I think what you guys have all done is you've earned the
right to not so much brag but to tell your story.
And I think that is really critical in creating the culture
change we need here in America to continue to move in the
sustainable fashion.
I think we've made great strides.
You know, I think each of your leagues and your sports have
done amazing work doing that.
I hope this continues going forward.
I know that from the White House perspective,
the President has talked heavily about this issue and has
continued to push the federal government in this direction.
Before I close out, I just want to give Allen a chance to
say anything.
Allen Hershkowitz: Well, I just want to thank our panelists.
Really, you've provided spectacular information and
legitimacy to this panel.
Really appreciate you being here.
Again, thanks to CEQ.
I neglected to mention EPA, Stephanie Owens and Lisa and
Peter Murchie and many others from EPA earlier.
So I just want to give a shout out to EPA's great support
for this work.
I think we're going to be moving to a panel on the facilities and
maybe some PSAs.
Rohan Patel: Actually we're just going to take a quick ten-minute break,
bathroom break, and then we'll be back shortly.
Allen Hershkowitz: Thanks, folks.