Now that the postseason is over for the Eagles, and we know they will not be on the field for Super Bowl XLIII, we can focus on their work off the field.
One of the biggest ways the Eagles give back to the community is with the “Go Green” campaign, which they claim allows Lincoln Financial Field to run completely on sustainable energy.
At first, I was sure this was yet another manipulative business ploy, capitalizing on the current wave of environmentalism. However, no matter how hard I tried to resist, the facts quickly piled up, and I was convinced that the Eagles’ colors are appropriate for their organization.
For the past six years, the team has drastically reduced its environmental impact and has found innovative techniques for sustainability.
In September, the team announced the upcoming season’s 10 home games would be powered by wind credits. That’s 100 percent sustainable energy.
Still, there are issues with the team’s wind credit system. We know the team paid a wind energy company, but what does that mean? Are the stadium lights and hot dog stands powered by groups of turbines at local wind farms?
Although that’s what comes to mind when the phrase “100 percent sustainability” is thrown around, the reality is quite different.
Wind credits are the latest craze in the green economy. Credits can even be bought in the check-out lanes at Whole Foods Market. These credits represent the extra money that would be spent on energy if it were wind powered. The extra money does not mean facilities receive clean electricity that comes from wind farms.
Instead, the extra money provides capital for wind power companies, allowing them to set up additional turbines and contribute to the national grid.
Can these renewable energy businesses keep up with the “Go Green” campaign?
According to the mission statement posted on philadelphiaeagles.com, the goal of the campaign is “to create and sustain championship performance on the field and in the community through programs that promote the quality of life in our region, green the environment to improve our impact on the planet and enhance our profitability as a business.”
According to the Philadelphia Business Journal, the Eagles have reduced their energy consumption by 30 percent since 2004.
Despite the obvious flaws in the wind credit system, the team has been able to acquire renewable energy straight from another source: solar panels.
According to greenphillyblog.com, the new solar panels were “installed in summer 2007 and are expected to produce 16,100 kilowatt hours, eliminating 26,400 pounds of carbon dioxide (or greenhouse gas) emissions per year.”
The “Go Green” campaign has proven countless times that the Eagles are on the cutting edge of the green movement. Even though 100 percent sustainability might not be what it seems, at least they’re in front, making a difference in our community.
Mike Podlogar can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.