By Grey Lee

Congratulations to the New England Patriots on their victory over the Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl on Sunday!
(Image Credit: Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)


With all the excitement around Super Bowl XLIX, we thought it would be fun to see how the home states of each team stack up in terms of Green Buildings and Energy Consumption (Yes we know that it’s the New England Patriots, but for the purposes of this study we are only including data from states that actually house the stadiums!).  For good measures, we are also including the sunny state of Arizona where the big game was played.  The following bar graphs compare data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) on average monthly electricity consumption from 2012.


Arizona, Massachusetts and Washington are all very different places with a range of climatic, transmission and generation factors that influence how and when electricity is used.  In the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) 2014 rankings, Arizona placed 15th, Washington placed 8th, and Massachusetts placed 1st overall.  One component of the ACEEE ranking system is on Building Energy Codes, in which any state can earn up to 7 points.  Arizona earned 3 points in this category, with the majority of its municipalities using the 2009 IECC for residential construction.  Washington earned 6 points for building energy code stringency and adopting the 2012 IECC for both residential and commercial construction.  Massachusetts earned 5.5 points after adopting the 2012 IECC in 2014 with state-specific amendments.  Also, Massachusetts completed a baseline compliance study, which involves utilities in code compliance support efforts (ACEEE, 2014).
In addition to energy efficiency, these three states are also pursuing renewable energy solutions.  The Arizona Office of Energy Policy provides statistics on the state’s current renewable portfolio (8% total energy) and also a 10 year outlook on solar, wind, biomass, geothermal and hydroelectric for the state.  Massachusetts office of Energy and Environmental Affairs provides information on different types of renewable energy, funding programs and incentives, as well as installation assistance.  Also, Massachusetts obtained 9.3% of its total energy from renewable sources in 2013.  The Washington State Energy Office provides energy policy support as well as analysis for the legislature and commerce and manages the State Energy Program.  Washington is the nation’s leader in hydroelectric generation, accounting for 29% of total hydro capacity in the United States.
How are these states doing when it comes to Green Building? Looking at data from the USGBC from 2013, we can see Washington State has an edge over both Massachusetts and Arizona with an impressive 1,474 registered LEED projects!
A lot of energy goes into putting on a Super Bowl.  What are stadium operators and teams doing to address this?  The University of Phoenix Stadium is a member of the USGBC and as part of their Green Mission, prioritizes recycling and Green Products, water-efficiency and high efficiency LED lighting.  Find out more about their Green Mission here: University of Phoenix Stadium


(Image Credit: Arizona Cardinals)


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