Blazers take the ‘leed’ during NBA Green Week

Press release:


April 9 ceremony will commemorate first major pro team to play in LEED Gold facility
PORTLAND, Ore. – In conjunction with NBA Green Week, a league-wide sustainability awareness initiative from April 1-9, the Portland Trail Blazers will commemorate the Rose Garden’s LEED Gold certification with a LEED plaque unveiling ceremony on April 9 at 3:30 p.m. at the Rose Garden’s North entrance.

NBA Deputy Commissioner Adam Silver will join Trail Blazers President Larry Miller, Senior Scientist Allen Hershkowitz of the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and a representative of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) to officially recognize the Trail Blazers becoming the first major pro sports team to earn a coveted LEED Gold rating from the USGBC.

“We are proud of this achievement, not only for the progress it represents for our organization, but because it reinforces Portland’s leadership as America’s greenest city,” Miller said. “We see this as an ongoing commitment to sustainability throughout our operations, not just a one-time event. By doing that, we hope to encourage visitors to the Rose Quarter to think and act more responsibly to reduce their own impact on the environment.”

At the ceremony, the Trail Blazers will host Boys and Girls Clubs ‘Youth of the Year’ finalists, representing communities throughout Oregon, to provide an educational experience that will also include a tour of many of the Rose Garden’s sustainable operations and tickets to the Trail Blazers game that night.

The Rose Garden is the first arena in professional sports to achieve LEED Gold status. The Trail Blazers join the Atlanta Hawks (Philips Arena) and Miami Heat (AmericanAirlines Arena) as the only NBA teams to play in venues that have achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification. LEED certification rewards best green building practices for energy, water and natural resource performance.

Throughout Green Week, adidas will outfit all 30 NBA teams with 50 percent organic polyester shooting shirts featuring the NBA Green logo. Players can also wear NBA Green headbands, wristbands and socks made from 45 percent organic cotton to further promote greater environmental awareness.

“Green Week showcases the NBA’s ability to inspire positive action and is another example of why the league has an outstanding reputation as one of the world’s most responsible sports organizations,” Hershkowitz said. “A healthy environment benefits everyone, and the NBA’s continued incorporation of that understanding into its operations proves it takes its commitment to environmental protection seriously.”

During last night’s nationally televised game between the Trail Blazers and Denver Nuggets, an “NBA Cares” spot featured Trail Blazers Brandon Roy and Dante Cunningham. On Tuesday, Roy and Cunningham assisted fifth grade students from Gilbert Heights Elementary School with the planting of a community garden. During the planting, Roy and Cunningham spoke about the role community gardening can play in fostering greater public and environmental health.

On April 9, after the LEED ceremony, the Trail Blazers will host the Dallas Mavericks in the third annual Green Awareness Game, presented with Trail Blazers green partners Pacific Power, Stalk Market and NW Natural.

The Green Awareness Game will provide in-game green tips with the help of eco-mascots, including the EcoTrust salmon, Friends of Trees tree and “Bottle Bill.” The mascots will help get more children and students excited about recycling, tree planting and other green practices.

Other Green Awareness Game activity includes:

· The Rose Garden will roll-out more than 100 new recycling/compost stations to eliminate waste, collect compostable materials and keep recyclables from reaching landfills.

· An NBA Green basketball, signed by the entire Trail Blazers team, will be among the auction items available at the make it better auction, benefiting the make it better fund.

· The Trail Blazers will encourage fans to consider alternative transportation to further increase the approximately 30 percent of Rose Garden visitors who already arrive by bike, bus and light rail.

· At the Trail Blazers Fan Shop, fans can purchase the same shooting shirts worn by the teams. The shop is also offering a locally-made ‘make it better’ shirt, made of organic cotton with water-based ink, benefiting the make it better fund.

The Trail Blazers and the Rose Quarter have made sustainability and sustainability awareness a year-round commitment.

Following Green Week, on April 14th – the final night of the regular season – the Trail Blazers will host ‘Bike to the Blazers’ with, the Bicycle Transportation Alliance and other bike advocates. Participants will gather at Waterfront Park to partially recreate a route Bill Walton routinely took over the Steel Bridge; Walton has donated an autographed bike helmet that will be given away to one lucky rider.

“NBA Green Week 2010 not only highlights the success of our teams’ efforts, but serves as a reminder to fans that we can all work to reduce our environmental footprint,” said NBA Executive Vice President of Social Responsibility and Player Programs Kathleen Behrens.

To learn more about what the Trail Blazers and NBA are doing to “Go Green”, please visit or


About the Natural Resources Defense Council

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is a national, nonprofit organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in 1970, NRDC has 1.3 million members and online activists, served from offices in New York, Washington, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Livingston, MT and Beijing. For more information on how to green an event or organization, go to


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