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How to Manage a Green Stadium Through Supply Chain Management

By Bisk
How to Manage a Green Stadium Through Supply Chain Management

The NFL partners with several charities and programs to help give back to the fans who have made it the most popular sport in the nation, and over the last several years, it has made going green a top initiative.

What Does a Green NFL Look Like?

MetLife Stadium is the home of the New York Jets and New York Giants, and in 2015, it was voted the most sustainable sports stadium on the planet. As such, it’s the standard for the green NFL, thanks to features like…

  • The use of aggressive recycling programs
  • Low-flow faucets and toilets
  • Waterless urinals
  • Food composting
  • Mass transit alternatives for fans

The stadium was built in 2010, in collaboration with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, so that it could reduce energy, water and waste production across all operations.

Other stadiums have taken similar steps to reduce their footprint. Levi’s Stadium, home of the San Francisco 49ers, acquires 85% of its water from recycled sources and 78% of its food from suppliers within 150 miles of the stadium.

Philadelphia’s Lincoln Financial Field generates 100% of its electricity on-site, and prides itself on being a “zero-waste” facility.

Soldier Field, in Chicago, has also taken steps to lower operating costs, conserve energy and water and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Even the NFL headquarters has received LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environment Design) certification, after a move to Manhattan in 2011.

How Does the NFL Sustain a Green Stadium?

It’s not enough for the NFL to initiate green practices if those practices aren’t sustainable, and supply chain management is the solution to sustainability. There are well-tested strategies to supply chain sustainability, and the NFL has exemplified each of them thus far.

  • Acquire a clear vision for positive influence – This involves three separate phases. The first is targeting and minimizing risk. The NFL is too big to afford a business disruption of any kind, and they’ve safeguarded their green initiative in a way that will reduce any negative risk. The second phase is supply chain improvement, which involves the development of systems and processes to increase the power of positive impacts, several of which are detailed above regarding stadium improvements. The third phase is supply chain transformation, which is the execution of those systems and processes.
  • Gauge impact and influence – Key performance indicators are necessary for any major initiative. The NFL monitors the levels of energy it’s preserving and waste it’s reducing, and it vets those figures from franchise to franchise to measure what’s working and what’s not. This is a critical part of supply chain sustainability – communicating with stakeholders to uncover the objective impact and influence of your systems and processes.
  • Collaborate – It’s nearly impossible to facilitate sweeping changes without a little help. The NFL works directly with owners and outside experts to help make sure their stadiums are always improving in energy conservation and waste reduction. These partnerships help the league set standards and objectively analyze what they’re trying to accomplish.

The NFL, and all other major North American sports, are seen as trendsetters in big business. But “trends” are fleeting. The NFL wants to be an agent for positive change and beneficial influence, and they’re making a difference by going green and sustaining their efforts with supply chain management.

Category: Supply Chain Management