Major League Baseball was represented at the event by Bob Nutting, Owner and Chairman of the Board of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Joe Abernathy, Vice President of Stadium Operations for the St. Louis Cardinals and Scott Jenkins, Vice President of Ballpark Operations for the Seattle Mariners.
Also attending from Major League Baseball were Bill Bordley, Vice President, Security & Facility Management, Neil Boland, Vice President, Information Security & Special Projects and Paul Hanlon, Director, Facilities Operations.
The White House held the event to celebrate the sports industry’s innovative success in adopting more sustainable practices. The event focused on the economic and environmental benefits of greening the sports industry, featuring senior Administration officials and three discussion panels, from league, team and supply chain perspectives.
Many of MLB’s 30 Clubs have adopted sustainable practices and initiatives that encourage fans to become more environmentally friendly. Major League Baseball began an alliance with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in 2006 to identify and promote better environmental practices. Since 2008, MLB has incorporated environmentally intelligent features in its All-Star Week activities, the Midsummer Classic itself and the Word Series.
In December 2009, a Greening Committee was created by senior ballpark operations executives at select Clubs and members of the NRDC and MLB Central Office staff. The group’s first recommendation was the creation of a new software tool for sustainable ballpark management which launched in 2010. The software system, the first of its kind created by a professional sports league, collects and analyzes stadium operations data to develop and distribute best practice information across the 30 Clubs.