TAMPA, FL -- While the top teams in the nation vie for the College Football Playoff National Championship Trophy on the field, off the field the Tampa Bay community will be the big winners thanks to the event’s dedication to going green. The College Football Playoff has partnered with the Tampa Bay Sports Commission, Brazilian steel manufacturer, Gerdau, and a number of local organizations for its sustainability initiative, Playoff Green. The program aims to set the benchmark for the green footprint created by large-scale events while making a meaningful impact regarding waste, recycling and sustainability in the Tampa Bay area.
Five major project areas have been identified as focal points during the final weekend of the college football season:
Solid waste and recycling - will divert waste through composting, recycling and reuse of event materials at College Football Playoff and Championship Campus venues
Prepared food recovery - in partnership with Feeding Tampa Bay, will recover and donate unserved food from event venues
Material recovery - will reuse and repurpose event materials including decor, office supplies and building supplies for donation to Tampa Bay nonprofit organizations
Renewable energy - includes sourcing renewable energy certificates equivalent to the electricity used at Raymond James Stadium and other event venues during championship events
The Playoff Green Campus Challenge - will give ten local schools an opportunity to “green” their campus and earn funds for school supplies and urban forestry projects
In addition to efforts with local schools (grades K-8), Playoff Green will train and work with local university students currently studying sustainability initiatives. These students will participate in a number of on-site efforts leading into and on game day, and will also form the core of the “green ambassador” team which will assist fans with recycling during the national championship game.
“Tampa Bay is no stranger to sports sustainability having helped with the greening of several Super Bowls over the years,” said Jack Groh, College Football Playoff Sustainability Consultant and Director of Environmental Programming for the NFL since 1993. “The College Football Playoff National Championship gives the community a chance to demonstrate how sports entertainment and environmental responsibility go hand in hand.”
The Playoff Green program in Tampa Bay comes on the heels of incredible successes attained in other championship markets. The 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship in Glendale, Arizona, earned a 91 percent waste diversion rate, meaning that less than 10 percent of the waste generated from the stadium campus ended up in a landfill. Under current practices, a diversion rate of 90 percent or above qualifies as a “Zero Waste” event. Past efforts also included partnerships with local nonprofit organizations to repurpose materials from the stadium and Championship Campus, tree planting events and a water conservation promotional plan.
“Initiatives like Playoff Green illustrate yet another real and tangible benefit to Tampa Bay from hosting the national championship game,” said Rob Higgins, Executive Director of the Tampa Bay Sports Commission. “The foresight of Playoff Green and the programs that are implemented will impact our community for years to come.”
Information, including a complete event schedule, for 2017 Championship Campus events can be found at TampaBay2017.com. Fans can also stay on top of the latest news and events by subscribing toTouchdown Tampa Bay the official e-newsletter of the Tampa Bay Sports Commission.