Session spotlight: The Philadelphia Eagles go green
The NFL is going green!
The Greenbuild 2013 session, Philadelphia Eagles – Go Green Program Overview, offers an in-depth look into an exciting new initiative. The Philadelphia Eagles Go Green program creates and sustains championship performances on the field and in the community through sustainable practices that promote the quality of life, green the environment and improve one’s impact.
Greenbuild Program Working Group Member Gregg Woodruff, Senior Project Manager at Langan Engineering & Environmental Services (who picked this as his favorite session to attend); and Christina Weiss Lurie, Co-Owner of the Philadelphia Eagles and President Eagles Youth Partnership, Eagles Social Responsibility, and this session’s presenter, offer a preview.
What’s the topical focus of your session?
Christina: The focus of our session will be Philadelphia Eagles journey to sustainability. What started as a modest recycling program has transformed into an industry-leading initiative integrated into every part of our mission.
What makes you an expert in this area?
Christina: We are not environmental experts by trade, however we have learned from the best in the business and our experiences along the way have grown each of us into authorities on greening a business, a building and a fan-base.
Why is the topic of this session important?
Christina: Businesses, non-profits and individuals should know that change is possible, profitable and achievable in any setting.
Gregg: The topic of this session is important because most people know the National Football League as an extremely well-run and successful sports league full of highly sophisticated business owners and organizations. The fact that an NFL team is undertaking such significant sustainability initiatives should create credibility that sustainability not only makes environmental sense, but financial sense.
Why should Greenbuild attendees attend YOUR session specifically?
Christina: We are a great example of how any business can achieve tremendous shift – 30 to 99% diversion rate in a matter of years – with the right leadership, learning and commitment.
Gregg: This session specifically is important because as one of Philadelphia’s iconic sports franchises, the Philadelphia Eagles are offering an opportunity to not only hear about their initiatives in the classic conference setting but also as part of a guided tour on the Saturday after Greenbuild officially ends. The tour of the stadium offers the opportunity to see what the Eagles are implementing first hand and connect the session information heard during the conference presentation together with direct observations.
What interests or excited you the most about this session?
Gregg: It is incredibly intriguing to me on both a personal and professional level to watch the market shift for owners and tenants who likely previously may not have been focused on sustainability become some of its greatest advocates as economic factors shift, technology improves, and user demands evolve.
How do you interface with this topic or issue in your work or home life?
Gregg: Throughout Langan’s various offices, we have been involved in a number of stadium planning and construction projects as well as other larger planning efforts focused on sustainability. Large landowners, such as stadium owners or municipalities, are increasingly identifying opportunities to not only improve their impact but also increase revenues through sustainability. Langan has been involved in efforts similar to this program in other locations so I am eager to hear more details about the approach taken at this stadium, where we have been involved in other engineering tasks in the recent past.
What’s the most interesting experience you’ve had in the green building/sustainability world?
Christina: When we the Eagles went to the Superbowl in 2005, we did Adopt-a-Highway very close to our hotel at the Sawgrass Marriott outside of Jacksonville. Some of our executives – myself included – got their hands dirty and cleaned up the side of the road by the highway with picks. It was hands on and took our dedication to the environment across the country with us.
What’s the most interesting non-green building related fact about yourself?
Christina: My documentary film company, Screen Pass Pictures, is a non-profit that supports films addressing social issues, including Inside Job which won the Academy Award for Best Documentary (Feature) in 2011, A Place at the Table and Inocente which won the Oscar for Best Documentary (Short) in 2013, all of which I executive produced.
Gregg: I am not sure how interesting I am. I am a husband and father of three boys under the age of 8. So the most interesting part of me some days is probably that I am awake. All kidding aside, I enjoy sports and exercising and tackled my first two sprint-level triathlons last summer and plan to participate in my first endurance Spartan Race this fall at the urging of some friends.
Interested in creating the education program at Greenbuild? There are numerous Committees and Working Groups that you can join. The 2014 Call for Expressions of Interest is open from Oct. 7-Nov. 29. Learn more about the application process beginning Oct. 7.