Lessons from the Most Sustainable Show on Earth

The quiet Arizona desert explodes for a week each year with the cheers of over half a million golf fans. For the seventh year, Waste Management has turned the biggest event in golf into the largest verified zero-waste event in the world.

The Waste Management Phoenix Open is the biggest golf event ever with almost 625,000 fans. That’s the population of Milwaukee – and there’s not a trash can in sight. Instead there are 4,000 recycling and composting bins along with hundreds of Recycling Ambassadors on course and educating attendees on how to Recycle Right.

It’s all part of the Zero Waste Challenge. One hundred percent of tournament waste is repurposed, donated, diverted to recycling and composting, or converted straight to energy.

Everything from bottles and cans, to apple cores and hot dogs are repurposed for beneficial use. Last year 241 tons were recycled, that’s about 90 SUVs worth of plastic, metal, paper and other material. 202 tons of discarded food from the tournament were composted and turned into fertilizer – enough fertilizer for 1,200 acres.

More than 30,000 pounds of unused, perishable food from the tournament is donated to local charities. And over 12 tons of tournament materials repurposed and used by Habitat for Humanity in the Phoenix area.

Last year The Thunderbirds raised $9,369,873 in proceeds for local charities from the 2016 tournament. The tournament’s total economic impact exceeded $227 million – making The Waste Management Phoenix Open one of the largest economic impacts of any golf event in the nation

For the players, the fans, and the environment – The Waste Management Phoenix Open generates amazing shots, unforgettable memories and the cleanest, greenest sporting event ever.

Lessons learned at the Greenest Show on Grass have helped Waste Management improve sustainability services for customers, communities and businesses across the country. Waste Management is showing the world of sports what the next level of environmental and social responsibility looks like.

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Seven days. 625,000 fans. Zero waste. See how Waste management turned the largest stop on the PGA TOUR® into the Greenest Show on Grass. See more >>