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EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ-When the New York Jets and New York Giants kickoff their 2010 seasons, they won’t just have a new stadium to call home, they’ll be playing in one of the greenest venues in sports thanks to a partnership with the US Environmental Protection Agency. EPA and the New Meadowlands Stadium Co., the stadium’s principal owner, signed a memorandum of understanding yesterday that outlines plans to incorporate environmentally friendly materials and practices into the construction and operation of New Meadowlands Stadium here.

“The New Meadowlands Stadium will be one of the greenest stadiums in American professional sports,” EPA acting regional administrator George Pavlou tells GlobeSt.com. “This ambitious, comprehensive plan set forth by the two team ownership groups is a blueprint for new sports venues everywhere.”

The agreement details myriad strategies to reduce air pollution, conserve water and energy, improve waste management and reduce the environmental impact of construction. Goals of the agreement include cutting the stadium’s annual water use by 25%, making it 30% more energy efficient than Giants Stadium, increasing total recycling by 25% and recycling 75% of construction waste.

All told, the goals of the agreement stand to save the equivalent of the emissions of nearly 1.68 million metric tons of carbon dioxide during the stadium’s construction and its first year of operations. According to the EPA, that’s equal to taking more than 300,000 cars off the road for a whole year or the emissions from the energy needed to power 150,000 American homes for one year.

“From the first planning stages of this project, we were committed to designing, building and operating a stadium that would be as environmentally friendly and responsible as possible,” says John Mara, co-owner of the New York Giants.

“And when the stadium opens, our efforts will only intensify,” adds Woody Johnson, owner of the New York Jets. “What we are creating here is more than just a place to play and watch football. The 80,000 people who come to our games will be able to rest-assured that we are working not only to make them comfortable, but also to minimize their impact on the environment.”

Highlights of the goals established under the agreement include: using some 40,000 tons of recycled steel to build the stadium and recycling 20,000 tons of steel when Giants Stadium is demolished; installing seating made partially from recycled plastic and scrap iron; building the stadium on a parcel of rehabilitated land, a former brownfield; reducing air pollution from construction vehicles by using cleaner diesel fuel and diesel engine filters and shortening how long engines idle; using environmentally friendly concrete in construction; reducing water consumption and increasing energy efficiency; providing mass transit options for fans; and replacing traditional concession plates, cups and carries with compostable alternatives.

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