Green Campus Spotlight: PSU joins Green Sports Alliance
Author: Campus Sustainability Office
Posted: December 4, 2015

There is a movement among professional and collegiate athletics to support the environment through a commitment to sustainability in their operations. As of this November, Portland State University Athletics has joined this movement by becoming a member of the Green Sports Alliance. The Portland-based Green Sports Alliance convenes sports teams and establishments across the world. 

According to its website, the alliance  “leverages the cultural and market influence of sports to promote healthy, sustainable communities where we live and play. We do so by inspiring sports leagues, teams, venues, their partners and millions of fans to embrace renewable energy, healthy food, recycling, water efficiency, species preservation, safer chemicals and other environmentally preferable practices.”

The group’s membership comprises more than 300 sports teams and venues from 20 different sports leagues and 14 countries.

Founded by Paul Allen’s Vulcan Inc. and the Natural Resources Defense Council, the Green Sports Alliance includes local members such as the Seattle Seahawks, Portland Trail Blazers, Seattle Sounders FC, the Vancouver Canucks, Oregon State University, and University of Oregon among many others around the world. 

“We’re proud of our new membership with the Green Sports Alliance,” said PSU Athletic Director Mark Rountree. “Portland State is a leader in sustainable thinking and environmental friendly business practices. This membership will offer PSU new partnerships and new opportunities to enhance our efforts.”

Joining the Alliance is timely as PSU plans a major renovation of the current Peter Stott center, making way for the new Viking Pavilion—a project that is intended to achieve LEED Gold certification. Many of the sustainability actions undertaken by Green Sports Alliance members focus on the operations of team stadiums and arenas. Some examples include: rainwater capture and reuse, enhanced waste diversion strategies, energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements (roof top solar panels, e.g.), encouraging alternative transportation for visitors to the stadium, and donating extra food to local charities. 

“I’m incredibly excited about this decision as it directly supports university sustainability and climate action goals and contributes to the vibrant culture of stewardship here at PSU.  I look forward to working with Athletics on a plan to make these changes a reality and seeing how this translates to the operation and design of the Viking Pavilion,” said Jenny McNamara, PSU sustainability manager.

Thanks to PSU Athletics for making a public commitment to sustainability!