The NFL has been on a crusade for the past 14 years to reduce football's impact on the environment, and has quietly taken a lot of ecofriendly steps. Sunday's game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Arizona Cardinals will be powered by renewable energy and offset by tree planting. The venues will also recycle, donate leftover food to Tampa area food banks, and donate office supplies, decor, and construction materials to area nonprofits. So how do you celebrate a sustainable Super Bowl? Here are five ways.
- Make your own pizza. It's one of the busiest nights of the year for pizza delivery, and waiting for the pizza guy is such a drag. In addition, pizza boxes can't be recycled. It's better to make your own pizza (which is not that hard if you buy a kit). It will be healthier, faster, and produce much less waste.
- Try an organic brew. Planet Green offers a guide to organic beer, broken down by region so that you can be sure your beer isn't traveling too far to get to your party. Peak Organic and New Belgium are two popular brands that have gotten rave reviews.
- Chicken wings are in short supply this year, so consider more vegetarian options. Have you heard about the chicken wing shortage? Buffalo wings may be more expensive this year, because of high demand, and the bankruptcy of one supplier. That's why it would be wise to include more vegetarian options on your menu this year. You don't even have to defy the annual Super Bowl tradition of eating greasy comfort foods to be vegetarian - frengh fries, macaroni and cheese, and potato skins are all sure to please a football-lover's palate. A recent study from Scientific American says that beef contributes 13 times the greenhouse impact of chicken, and 57 times that of potatoes, so load up on the fries instead of the hot dogs.
- Skip the paper plates. Most of your Super Bowl fare is scooped out of communal bowls and eaten with your hands. You probably won't need any paper or plastic plates or disposable utensils if all you're eating is chips, dip, and pizza anyway, and you'll save money on your celebration by crossing these items off of your list and using your regular dishes, instead.
- Adjust the settings on your big screen TV so that it uses less energy. If you turn down the brightness just a little and compensate with room lighting, it will save between 30 to 50 percent of the power that the TV consumes, says CNET. Find more energy-saving TV tips here.