Spectators at the big Leinster Gaelic Football semi-final this weekend (10 June) will be served hot beverages in vegetable-based plastics as Croke Park attempts to phase out disposable plastics.
The cups will be disposed of in the stadium’s organic waste streams, where they will be composted and made available to the local community gardens.
It’s part of a drive by the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA), which operates Ireland’s largest stadium, to reduce plastic waste and maintain its 0% waste to landfill record. The next step in the venue’s sustainability plan is to phase out all plastics from its bars and concessions units.
Away from the major sporting events, people who attend the numerous conferences the stadium hosts will have their water – still and sparkling – served in refillable glass bottles.
Croke Park’s sustainability team, known as the Environmental, Sustainability and Safety Management Group, are in the process of drafting a new sustainability strategy for the stadium for 2018, which has plastic reduction right at the heart of its goals.
Aside from the plastic reduction project, the team will integrate new energy monitoring measures and are planning to upgrade the LED lighting system to make further gains in energy efficiency.
The stadium’s sustainability work will be showcased more broadly during its annual Sustainability Day, which will occur during the All-Ireland hurling finalists competition on the last weekend of July.
Croke Park was the first stadium in the world to receive ISO 14001 and ISO 20121 accreditation.