Keeping Score Looking at the numbers behind pro sports

A look at the numbers behind all the green initiatives in pro sports—including football, baseball and basketball.


5. Number of years that the Super Bowl has gone green.

500. Tons of greenhouse gas that researchers estimate is emitted from Super Bowl festivities.

3,000. Number of trees that the NFL planted around Florida to reduce the estimated one million pounds (500 tons) of carbon dioxide emitted by Super Bowl XLI (2007)—not counting air travel to Miami.

1.35. Pounds of carbon dioxide emitted per fan based on a football stadium that seats approximately 78,000 fans.

25,000. Approximate amount, in dollars, the Miami Dolphin Stadium gets each year by bailing and selling its own cardboard.

100. Percentage of clean energy the Philadelphia Eagles use after purchasing 14 million kilowatt-hours of renewable wind energy.

38. Number of cheerleaders featured in “eco-friendly bikinis’ in the Eagles’ 2008 calendar.

46. The space, in feet, between recycling bins at a Philadelphia Eagles game. A study showed that people will actually walk that distance to drop off a plastic cup for recycling; any further, and the cups will be dumped with regular trash.


160,000. Estimated number of baseballs used per season, about 5-6 dozen balls per game.

30. Approximate number of professional baseball and football teams that use artificial/synthetic turf.

80 million. Number of spectators that Major League Baseball attracts each year.

10. Approximate number of the 30 MLB teams that have “gone green,” according to the EPA.

30 million. Number of hot dogs estimated to be sold at MLB parks in 2008.

5,500. Amount of construction waste, in tons, recycled from the building of Nationals Park.

480,000. Pounds of carbon emissions created by the 18-block-long, 100% recycled “green” carpet for the 2008 All-Star Game Red Carpet Parade (though the emissions were offset through carbon credits).

18. Tons of annual carbon dioxide emissions reduced at Fenway Park stadium by installing solar thermal panels on the roof behind home plate.

180. Number of recyclable containers placed throughout the Pittsburgh Pirates ballpark to encourage recycling of plastic bottles and cans.

870. Pounds of glass the Pittsburgh Pirates recycled in 2008. Also recycled were 5,913 pounds of aluminum cans; 33,547 pounds of plastic; 3.61 tons of mixed paper; 193 tons of baled cardboard and skids of catalogs and 20,100 gallons of used cooking oil.

724. Days it took to build the Washington Nationals’ new ballpark, which was the first green professional stadium in the U.S. and LEED-silver certified by the U.S. Green Building Council.

30. Percentage of overall water consumption reduced by installing water-conserving plumbing fixtures, saving an estimated 3.6 million gallons of water per year at Nationals Park.

6,300. Number of square feet for a green roof above the Nationals’ concession/toilet area that minimizes roof heat gain.

590. Amount of solar panels installed at the San Francisco Giants’ AT&T Park, providing up to 120 kilowatts of energy that will be connected to San Francisco’s power grid.

100,000. Amount, in dollars, AT&T Park saved on garbage disposal fees in one year through its recycling program.


100. Approximate dollar amount for a pair of Nike “Trash Talk” sneakers, the first performance basketball shoes made from factory floor leather and foam waste.

5. Millions of dollars it cost to build the Steve Nash Sports Club in Vancouver, which has a LEED silver rating thanks to bamboo flooring, recycled car tire mats and area rugs made from recycled sneaker laces.

70. Number of Wilson Rebound green basketballs it takes to add up to one tire that’s not being tossed into a landfill.

0. Number of these balls used by the NBA.

75. Number of Spalding balls used per team per season.

230. Price, in dollars, of the limited-edition Nike Air Jordan shoe that is manufactured with some recyclable materials and doesn’t use solvent-based glues.