The NFL's best defense in the Seattle Seahawks goes up against the League's best offense in the Denver Broncos in Superl Bowl XLVIII at the nation's most energy efficient stadium — MetLife Stadium. Both teams stack up well on the field but do their home fields stack up as well environmentally as MetLife Stadium?
What follows is a play by play of the environmental measures undertaken by the Seahawks CenturyLink Field and the Broncos legendary Mile High Stadium now known as Sports Authority Field.
Broncos win the coin toss
The Denver Broncos win the pre-game coin toss based on their pre-game efforts. In 2008, the Broncos began a Green Team initiative to encourage green tailgating efforts before each home game promoting recycling and handing out trash bags. The Seahawks offer EV charging stations at CenturyLink Field. While they get points for looking forward there are more tailgaters than electric vehicles.
Seahawks score first with sustainability report: Seattle 7 Denver 0
Both teams talk a good environmental game but the Seattle Seahawks "Defend Your Turf" sustainability report is easy to find on their website. We're still looking for the Broncos Game Plan Green CSR. Seattle marches into the endzone uncontested.
Recycling efforts split the uprights: Seattle 10 Denver 3
Both teams trade field goals on their respective recycling initiatives. The Broncos bought a cardboard baler in 2008 and instituted stadium wide recycling in 2007. The Seahawks kick a chip shot field goal as their efforts are quantifiable — 94 percent of waste has been diverted from landfill. Up 47 percent from four years ago.
What did I miss at the snack bar? Seattle 17 Denver 6
You always miss something when you go and grab some munchies. The Seahawks score big by producing 5 million gallons of bio-diesel in 2012 and composting 100 percent of its food containers. The Broncos have been composting in the main kitchen since 2008. With no numbers to back up their efforts their drive stalls and they are forced to kick a field goal.
Lights out football! Seattle 24 Denver 13
The Seahhawks were the first NFL team to install solar panels that provide 30 percent of their energy needs. Arch lighting at CenturyLink Field has been converted to programmable LEDs for additional savings. A lighting retrofit in 2009 at Denver's Sports Authority Field was estimated to save 1.4 million Kwh annually. Both teams score big!
As we head to halftime: Seattle 27 Denver 13
Where does everybody go at halftime? Everybody goes! CenturyLink Field reduced its water use by 15 percent in 2012 and low-flow water fixtures save 1.3 million gallons of water per year.
The Broncos have the wind to their backs: Seattle 27 Denver 20
By partnering with Xcel Energy's Windsource Program the Broncos have purchased renewable wind energy to offset 100 percent of the electricity used to power all home games since the 2011 season.
Broncos score again: Seattle 27 Denver 27
An Energy Management Program at Sports Authority Field has resulted in an overall 11 percent energy usage reduction.
Seattle comes right back with a TD of their own: Seattle 34 Denver 27
The Seahawks see the Broncos 11 percent energy usage reduction and come right back with a 12 percent energy usage reduction of their own!
Final score: Seattle 37 Denver 27
Seattle puts the game out of reach in the dying seconds with a field goal for being a founding member of the Green Sports Alliance.
There you have it! The first Enviro Bowl champions are the Seattle Seahawks for their demonstrated sustainability efforts. When you look at the environmental numbers of the two teams, the Seahawks were prohibitive favorites.
We can only hope that the two teams facing off in Enviro Bowl II next year at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona are as environmentally aware as the Seattle Seahawks.
Enjoy the game!