Barclays Center and NYCB LIVE will eliminate single-use plastic straws at all events by 2019, becoming the first sports and entertainment venues in the New York area to make this commitment.
The move will divert from landfill the combined 5.5 million straws used annually by the two venues. Levy Restaurants, the venue’s food and beverage provider, will offer guests a strawless lid or alternative-material straw option, which will be compostable, upon request.
“Since opening Barclays Center, sustainability has been a priority and a core value for our company,” said Brett Yormark, CEO of BSE Global, in a statement. “I want to thank BSE Advisory Board member Adrian Grenier, co-founder of Lonely Whale, for inspiring us to be a leader in this movement.”
According to the company, Barclays Center said it was the first arena in New York to be LEED Silver Certified and, in partnership with waste management technology company Recycle Track Systems (RTS), uses composting and single stream recycling solutions in the venue. The arena’s culinary paper products, provided by Eco-Products, are compostable, and the venue’s green roof, the largest on any entertainment venue nationwide, reduces the amount of stormwater runoff from the building by close to 2 million gallons per year.
In 2013, the U.S. Green Building Council awarded LEED Silver Certification for New Construction to Barclays Center for its sustainable design and construction methods.
NYCB LIVE, which reopened in April 2017 after a $180 million renovation, features a steel façade that is made of nearly 100 percent recycled material, while some 50 percent of the demolition material from the renovation was diverted, sorted and recycled. The venue worked with Ecologic Solutions to install electro-chemically activated cleaning technology, utilizing saltwater and electricity to produce an all-purpose cleaning detergent and sanitizer disinfectant onsite, reducing the amount of packaging and waste associated with these purchases.
AEG 1EARTH, AEG’s companywide sustainability program, has served as an advisor on this initiative for both venues. Today, more than 80 sports and entertainment venues, teams and festivals around the world track monthly environmental performance metrics through the AEG 1EARTH program.
BSE Global also announced it will eliminate single-use plastic straws in its corporate offices as well.