Sports Stadium Recycling Sells Beer

July 18, 2014

Did you know that a sports stadium recycling impacts beer sales? Nearly a third of Americans said they’d be more likely to attend a game or concert at a sports stadium if they Safeco Cups 2learned that all of the trash left behind was recycled or composted. One in five would also buy more concessions.

This is according to the latest Eco-Pulse survey by Shelton Group. The survey finds sports and music fans care about the environment – and they’re willing to vote with their feet, and their beer cups.

Just as there is a carrot for sports stadium recycling, there’s also a stick: Nearly one out of five Americans said they would be less likely to attend another concert or game if they learned all of the trash left behind went straight to a landfill. One quarter said they’d buy fewer concessions.

With more than 200 million American going to go events at sports stadiums every year – and some 50 million attending concerts — this has major implications. At stake are tens of millions of dollars in ticket and concession sales, as well as tons of wasted resources.

Sports fans and concertgoers leave an estimated 16 million cubic feet of trash behind every year. That’s enough to fill Yankee Stadium and leave another 2 million cubic feet of garbage on the streets outside.

The survey is the first of its kind to measure Americans’ opinions on trash left behind at sports stadiums and concerts.

Folsom FieldAs Wendell Simonson, Vice President of Marketing for Eco-Products, noted: “We have a lot of anecdotal evidence of fans wanting sports stadiums to do more recycling and composting, but this is the first time we’ve had real data. Some stadiums and venues are ahead of the curve, such as Denver’s Red Rocks Amphitheater and Seattle’s Safeco Field. But there are a lot of others that may want to do more.”

We know Americans feel a lot of “green guilt,” and seeing a sports stadium littered with trash that’s going to the local landfill just makes it worse.

Sports stadium owners, teams and bands now have an opportunity to help absolve that guilt. Fans clearly want to help the environment, and they’re happier knowing their cups are headed to a compost pile.

And who doesn’t want another reason to feel good about having a beer?

-Susan Shelton, Guest Contributor
Suzanne Shelton is founder and CEO of Shelton Group, a leading marketing communications firm entirely focused in the energy-efficiency and sustainability space. She is a guest contributor to Eco News Network.

Photos provided courtesy of Shelton Group:
Beer cups at Safeco Field in Seattle (home of the Mariners). The stadium diverted more than 90 percent of its trash from landfills during the 2013 season.

Folsom Field at Colorado University diverted more than 90 percent of its trash from landfills during the 2013 football season (and was recently honored by the EPA for its efforts).

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