Maryland Stadium Authority engaged the services of the Maryland Environmental Service to evaluate ballpark operations and suggest ways to improve recycling efforts. With cooperation from our teammates at Oriole Park and M&T Stadium, MSA has made great progress in recycling every type of discarded material throughout the complex.
Camden Yards recycling results from numerous activities. On game days, there are materials picked up from the seating bowl after games, retrieved from recycling containers, generated by concessionaires, and collected from tailgaters.
In addition to the game day operations, Maryland Stadium Authority recycles the following:
- Fluorescent lights
- Cardboard boxes from shipments
- White paper from offices
- Newspaper, books and magazine
- Auto batteries
The business of recycling includes construction and equipment replacement. In 2011, MSA recycled the following::
- 35,480 lbs. of steel from the replacement of an escalator
- 2,140 lbs. of steel from the replacement of a handicap lift
- 954 tons of asphalt
- 32.24 tons of miscellaneous pipes and a cooling tower
- 36.8 tons of pallets
- 15.92 tons of fluorescent light tubes
- 32.407 tons of grease
Oriole Park has consistently increased recycled tonnage. In 2008, one
ton of refuse was recycled for every 25,000 fans. In August of the
2008 baseball season, MSA expanded the recycling program to include plastic and aluminum..
In 2009, the list of acceptable recyclables was expanded to include cans, bottles, cups, plastic tubs for cotton candy, and clean paperboard
trays. These all contributed to the increase of one ton for every
22,000 fans, with 68 total tons recycled.
Through a partnership with Coca Cola, both the Orioles and the Ravens stepped up efforts to encourage fan participation in 2009.
Coca Cola distributed attractive recycling receptacles in both stadiums and the Warehouse. Containers shaped like vintage Coke bottles were used at Oriole Park and "fan cans" topped with Raven helmets were deployed in and around M&T Bank Stadium and Ravens Walk.
In both stadiums, reminders about recycling were periodically broadcast on the video boards.
At M&T Bank Stadium, 111 tons of material was recycled in 2009, above their goal of 100 tons.
In 2010, Maryland Stadium Authority stepped up efforts for a comprehensive recycling plan for all campus facilities.
This policy, developed with guidance from Maryland Department of Environment, covers day to day recycling in addition to event operations.
In 2010, Oriole Park exceeded recycling tonnage by 30%, with one ton per
16,000 fans and nearly 100 tons collected for the season.
Also in 2010, Central Parking's tailgate recycling program was launched for Ravens games.
Lot parkers are greeted at the gate by a "Green Team" member, who gives them
a recycle bag for their tailgate trash. Carts and hand trucks patrol the lots to pick up recyclable bags before game time.
In 2011, well over 400,000 lbs. of waste was recycled from Orioles and Ravens game day operations.
Instead of ending up in landfills, our recycled material (processed by a nearby facility) has been turned into the next generation of aluminum cans and plastic bottles. Recycled paper is often exported for use abroad, providing more business for the Port of Baltimore in the process.
Recycling doesn't start and end with football and baseball. A special effort is made to ensure a recycling plan is in place for every major event taking place at our complex.
Also in 2011, MSA joined the Green Sports Alliance, enabling us to share best practices, recycling trends, and cutting edge recycling technology with other stadiums throughout the world.
In 2011, one of the original Oriole Park escalators was replaced.
Instead of scrapping the obsolete equipment, MSA recycled all the materials, yielding nearly 18 tons of metal.
Recyclables are sorted and stacked during the construction process.
In 2012, MSA stepped up tailgate recycling efforts in the parking lots prior to Ravens games. Permit holders were greeted at lot entrances by Green Team members, who gave them recycle bags and information about separating their trash.
The Green Team consisted of program sponsors from Constellation Energy, volunteers from local schools, Central Parking, and stadium janitorial contractor Chimes.
Expanding the effort into the stadium periphery increased recycling tonnage dramatically.
2012 proved to be another record breaking year, as the Maryland Stadium Authority saw recycling climb a remarkable 25% from 388 tons to 485 tons. This was due to increased Oriole attendance as well as improved recycling efficiencies at both Oriole Par kand M&T Bank Stadium.
2012 was part of a broader trend that has seen recycling by the Maryland Stadium Authority rise by a stunning 50% since 2008. These figures do not include all the recycling done by our various construction projects, which include an additional 21 tons of steel recycled from an escalator replacement this year at OrioleParkand 954 tons of asphalt recycled the year before.
The Maryland Stadium Authority works with all its contractors, partners, tenants and third party events to make sure they all have sufficient recycling plans in place before entering the complex.
The Maryland Stadium Authority and its partners are increasingly viewed among its peers as industry leaders when it comes to recycling. This past summer the Green Sports Alliance invited the Maryland Stadium Authority, along with the Baltimore Ravens and Baltimore Orioles, to a summit at the White House to exchange ideas with other stadiums on how to make sports facilities more eco-friendly.
Some of the initiatives the Maryland Stadium Authority is looking into for 2013 include:
- A pilot program on composting at OriolePark
- All MSA new hires will be made aware of our recycling policies during their initial orientation
- In coordination with Mt. St. Mary’s University, MSA will do a study at OriolePar kon the recycling habits of fans to improve and refine our current recycling efforts
- The development of a recycling committee, comprised of members of the Maryland Stadium Authority, the Baltimore Ravens and the Baltimore Orioles who will meet semi-annually to discuss recycling best practices and ways to improve our efforts
The Maryland Stadium Authority recognizes that its dramatic increase in recycling participation could not be accomplished without support of both the fans of the Baltimore Orioles and Baltimore Ravens, who have been true partners in our recycling efforts.