Pittsburgh Pirates Chairman Bob Nutting was honored Thursday night by the Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC) for his leadership in the sports industry's movement to adopt sustainable business practices.
Nutting was recognized at the NRDC's Game Changer Award Gala at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in New York City for not only his leadership of the Pirates successful "Let's Go Bucs. Let's Go Green." initiative, but also for the innovative greening practices at the Nutting family-owned Seven Springs Mountain Resort and Ogden Newspapers publishing company. The Post-Journal is part of the Ogden newspaper chain.
"Bob is one of the pioneers in the professional sports greening movement that has made sustainability the rule rather than the exception," said NRDC President Frances Beinecke. "Through his dedication and actions, Bob and the Pirates are on the forefront in leading a cultural shift toward environmental responsibility in sports."
The Pirates "Let's Go Bucs. Let's Go Green" initiative, which focuses on recycling, conservation and awareness, now successfully diverts more than 65 percent of PNC Park waste materials out of the waste stream. That includes the recycling of approximately 66 tons of glass, 25 tons of aluminum cans, 54 tons of plastic, 26 tons of paper, 130 tons of cardboard, 17 tons of used cooking oil, 33 tons of yard waste and 91 tons of other recyclable materials.
In addition, the Pirates have taken significant steps to cut down on the ballpark's energy consumption and were one of the first Major League Baseball teams to have incorporated a composting program. The Pirates also continue to utilize its unique public platform to raise awareness of the importance of implementing greening initiatives.
"It is an honor to be recognized by the NRDC and accept this award on behalf of those within the Pirates, Seven Springs and Ogden Newspapers organizations whose hard work makes our sustainability initiatives possible," said Nutting. "We can all make a difference in protecting our environment. The city of Pittsburgh and the Laurel Highlands region is surrounded by such natural beauty. We are very fortunate to have an opportunity to live in, and help protect, it for future generations."
Nutting was joined at the NRDC's annual event by fellow honorees Woody Johnson, owner of the New York Jets, Steve Tisch and John Mara, co-owners of the New York Giants, Peter McLoughlin, CEO, Vulcan Sports and Entertainment and Scott Jenkins, Vice President of Ballpark Operations for the Seattle Mariners and Chair of the Green Sports Alliance.