Arenas and stadiums events generate tonnes of rubbish each and every year. The huge number of people that are gathered at the one time means there is a large volume of recyclables and waste.

Implementing a recycling plan and being involved in running more sustainable events at the arenas can help to save a lot of waste disposal costs each year and it helps to demonstrate environmental leadership and attract bigger audiences. When the public knows that you have been actively participating in recycling and sustainable efforts, the venue automatically becomes attractive enough to host important and major events, directly contributing to revenue generation.

Stadiums and arenas generate thousands of tonnes of rubbish each year. Recycling bins and depots play a big role in how successful your sustainability programme for both behind the scene and front of the house is going to be.

How to get started:

First, you need an event organiser to access the common waste streams at the centre and do an evaluation of the disposal methods currently in place. The area needs to be supervised and scanned to see corners where recyclables can be recycled. The proper segregation needs to be done on what to recycle were to be easier for any passer-by. When you make the recycling process complicated is when fewer people participate in it. Be it the supervisors, employees or the customers, recycling process needs to be strict yet simplified for one and all.

The common waste types are:

  • Cardboard
  • Paper
  • Plastic bottles
  • Glass
  • General waste
  • Food waste

 You will need to set out your aims. Don’t over-complicate the matter. It needs to be achievable but still measurable like these:

Once you have the goals all set out you need to focus on how to make your recycling scheme a success.

Restrict the waste that comes into the arena

Most stadiums are already trying to restrict what is coming into the venue and most have the same rule of not allowing drinks and food to be brought inside from the outside. Make it clear with signage about what items are not permitted into the stadium.
Ensure there are bins outside the arena for people to place their items in that they cannot bring into the grounds. A clear distinction between general, plastic and recyclable wastes must be done to make it easier for disposal. Otherwise segregating them at a later stage will be a hassle. Always think before you dispose of. Having recyclables in general waste can hugely lead to plenty of useful waste to be unnecessarily discarded.

Pass the bag

This is a good idea which consists of the staff handing out recycling bag to the public while they are sitting in their seats so they can put their waste inside the right bag and then be encouraged to pass it along to the next person. This avoids common littering around the area where the audience does not feel like walking to the next disposing box during a match. This makes it much more convenient for anything to dispose of the food waste or the containers they purchased food in to be disposed off with much ease.


Encourage the participation of the fans

Encouraging visitors to participate in the recycling scheme can be hard. You need to find ways to encourage the fans and engage the fans in their effort to lessen the stadium’s environmental footprint. It can be advertised between games and events to get the audience’s attention in general.
Another good way this can be done is by marketing and featuring the home team. Promotion videos on social media before the games and then show them on the big screen on match day. This will help fans become aware. Put clear signs around the place and on bins to let people know which bin is for what. Seeing their favourite stars being actively a part of the recycling process can encourage fans to take up similar efforts and continue working towards it.

Ensure the vendors are using compostable and recyclable materials

You need to work closely with the vendors who are responsible for a big amount of the venue’s waste. Add it to the contract that they must use containers and packaging that can be recycled or composted. Working with the foodservice companies and vendors is essential to lowering the environmental footprint and to ensure packaging goes right where it should. Everyone needs to be doing their bit for the environment and that includes stadiums and arenas. This is also beneficial when the stadium or the venue needs to be put up for hire for major and popular events around.