What does a 300-cow dairy farm in Central Michigan have to do with the festivities surrounding Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans? The answer: The farm is one of three carbon offset projects providing carbon credits aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions associated with the big game.
The carbon credits are part of a larger “Geaux Green” initiative launched by the Super Bowl XLVII Host Committee, Entergy Corporation, and the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) to limit the environmental impact of the Super Bowl. On the farm in Michigan, methane gas is being captured before it enters the atmosphere. This action generates registered carbon credits, which Entergy is purchasing to offset greenhouse gas emissions from Super Bowl-related activities.
The emissions include those related to travel to and from the Super Bowl by the players, coaches, cheerleaders, and other support staff from the two teams. The credits will neutralize or offset the environmental impact of power needed to operate Super Bowl venues including the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, the New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, and team hotels. Approximately 4,500 megawatts of power will be needed, resulting in some 3.8 million pounds of CO2. These emissions will be offset by the carbon credits provided by Entergy.
“Entergy is committed to protecting our environment, and the Super Bowl offers a unique opportunity to showcase creative programs aimed at making a difference,” said Patty Riddlebarger, director of corporate social responsibility for Entergy Corporation and the environmental initiatives chair for the New Orleans Host Committee.
Football fans can do their part by visiting the Geaux Green website. An easy-to-use calculator helps determine the carbon emissions associated with their trip to the big game. Fans can select how much of their travel they want to offset (starting at $5) and choose the carbon-offset project from which they would like to purchase credits. Entergy is matching fan offset purchases dollar-for-dollar.
Offset projects include a landfill gas collection project in Denton, Texas, a forest conservation initiative in the heart of California’s redwood region, and the methane-capture project in Michigan. All three projects have been certified to deliver the promised greenhouse gas reductions by the Climate Action Reserve.
The Geaux Green website also offers an environment-themed game for all football fans—traveling to the game or not. Visitors to the site can make pledges to take simple steps to reduce their energy use and environmental impact in the coming year. Entergy is matching all Geaux Green game pledges. In all, Entergy estimates that the company’s offset purchases related to the Super Bowl will result in more than 26 million pounds of avoided greenhouse gas emissions.
“Hosting the Super Bowl in the city where Entergy is headquartered is exciting,” said Riddlebarger. “Through Geaux Green, we’re assuring the benefits of the big game are far-reaching and everlasting.”