State Farm Arena hits recycling milestone

Atlanta Hawks and State Farm Arena announced that they have successfully diverted more than 3 million pounds of all waste from landfills throughout its 2023 slate of Hawks’ basketball games, concerts and ancillary events. 

As part of this sum, the award-winning downtown Atlanta venue recycled nearly one million pounds of materials (aluminium, cardboard, plastics, glass, etc.) and composted nearly one million pounds of food and organic material. 

In April 2022, State Farm Arena became the first sports and live entertainment venue in the world to receive TRUE Platinum certification. Achieving zero waste certification means diverting more than 90% of all waste from landfills and continuing to operate in a sustainable manner.

“We would like to thank everyone who has attended an event at State Farm Arena and our partners for their collaboration and support. Because of you we diverted over 3 million pounds of materials from the landfills in 2023. These materials are valuable resources and need to remain part of a circular system, like aluminium which is infinitely recyclable or cardboard that can be upcycled 5-7 times,” said Hawks and State Farm Arena Head of Sustainability Sofi Armenakian. 

“We recognise that every action contributes to a more environmentally conscious and responsible future for our city and beyond and are so proud of accomplishing this new milestone within the sports and live entertainment industry.”

State Farm Arena’s zero waste operation accomplished the following in 2023:

  • Recycled nearly one million (994,729) pounds of materials. This primarily included aluminium, plastics, cardboard, glass and more. 
  • Composted nearly one million (939,917) pounds of food and organic material. Any food that could not be donated was composted. Composting is the natural process of turning organic matter, such as food and compostable service ware, into a valuable fertiliser used by local farmers.
  • Reused or donated 752,868 pounds of materials like food, electronics, clothing, crates, pallets and more.
  • Reduced annual waste by 365,565 pounds by eliminating paper tickets, individual condiment packets, disposable service ware and more. 
  • All material diverted from the landfill in 2023 totalled more than three million pounds.

 The Hawks and State Farm Arena continue to lead the way in sustainable practices for sports and live event venues. Earlier this month, the Atlanta Hawks, State Farm Arena and WestRock, a leading provider of sustainable paper and packaging solutions, announced a multi-year sustainability-focused partnership. 

WestRock also became the official entitlement partner of State Farm Arena’s Resource Recovery Room (R3), an area dedicated to sorting waste generated during events and housed adjacent to the award-winning venue.

Since 2021, the Hawks and State Farm Arena have worked closely with Novelis, the world leader in aluminium rolling and recycling to continue encouraging fans to recycle. At the end of 2021, the Hawks and Novelis unveiled “FULL COURT PRESS”, a sculpture made up of nearly 404 lbs. of upcycled aluminium cups and cans in the shape of the primary Hawks logo, located on the Terrace level by the Gate 2 entrance at the award-winning venue.

 In October 2022, the Hawks and State Farm Arena joined forces with Oak View Group, Fenway Sports Group, and Jason F. McLennan to accelerate the sports and entertainment industry’s response to the climate crisis. GOAL, which stands for Green Operations & Advanced Leadership, will provide venues with a tactical roadmap, easy-to-use tracking tools, a library of resources, and access to like-minded operators, vendors, and sponsors all committed to operating more sustainably, more urgently.

To learn more about how the Atlanta Hawks and State Farm Arena are leading the way in sustainability efforts across the sports and entertainment industry, visit StateFarmArena.com/sustainability.

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