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Public Radio's Environmental News Magazine (follow us on Google News)

Cool Fix for a Hot Planet

Air Date: Week of

The Minnesota Twins are trying to keep their stadium as green as the outfield. Emily Guerin reports on this Major League effort to reduce their environmental impact.


YOUNG: Just ahead – how whistling while you work can turn you into an expert birder – but first this Cool Fix For a Hot Planet from Emily Guerin.


GUERIN: On Opening Day in April, the Minnesota Twins are hoping to hit a grand slam in sustainable design with their new stadium, Target Field. The stadium underwent a two and a half million dollar redesign to make it eligible for LEED certification, the U.S. Green Building Council’s rating of a building’s environmental impact.


Target Field has a number of environmentally friendly features already: it was built on an existing site, is close to public transportation, and was constructed with local building materials.

But to really hit the ball out of the park, the Twins are installing a gigantic rainwater collection system beneath the field. Rain that falls on the seven-acre park will drain into a school-bus-sized underground tank designed by a Minneapolis company called Pentair.

The water will be filtered and re-used to irrigate the field and wash the lower decks of the stadium. The Twins hope this system will cut their water needs in half—reducing consumption by two million gallons per year. Pentair will also provide water filters in offices and team areas to promote tap water and reduce the use of plastic water bottles.

If the Green Building Council approves the park, the Twins will become the second major league baseball team with a LEED-certified stadium, but the only one with a winning record. The other green park belongs to the Washington Nationals, who finished the 2009 season with the worst record in baseball.

That’s this week’s Cool Fix for a Hot Planet. I’m Emily Guerin.


YOUNG: And if you have a Cool Fix for a Hot Planet, we'd like to know it. If we use your idea on the air, we'll send you a sleek electric blue Living on Earth tire gauge. Keeping your tires properly inflated can save hundreds of dollars a year in fuel. Email us at coolfix—that's one word—at l-o-e dot org. That's coolfix at l-o-e dot org.



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