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Going for the Green at the Waste Management Phoenix Open

A fan wearing green pants stands next to recycling and compost containers during the continuation first round of the Waste Management Phoenix Open at TPC Scottsdale on February 3, 2012 in Scottsdale, Arizona. Waste Management is implementing strategic initiatives at the Phoenix Open to help reduce waste, recover and reuse materials while diverting more materials away from landfills.
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

February 3, 2012

On Saturday, February 4th, Waste Management is encouraging players and tournament attendees to wear green in support of many green/ sustainability initiatives that the company is doing to make the Waste Management Phoenix Open the greenest tournament on the PGA TOUR.

Waste Management will also bring back the popular “Going for the Green” contest offering to donate $25,000 to Keep America Beautiful in the name of the player who is closest to the pin at the par 3, 16th hole.  The players’ distance to the hole each round will be added together to reach a cumulative total. Of the proceeds, 50 percent will go to the local Keep Phoenix Beautiful chapter and 50 percent will go to Keep America Beautiful’s national ThinkGreen grant in the winner’s name.

A priority for the 2012 tournament is the “Zero Waste Challenge,” Waste Management’s campaign to educate patrons about how to properly dispose of their trash so that eventually zero waste is sent to the landfill. Waste Management is implementing strategic initiatives at the Phoenix Open to help reduce waste, recover and reuse materials while diverting more materials away from landfills:

  • No trash receptacles: This will be the first-ever Waste Management Phoenix Open to not use trash receptacles. Instead, there will be two options for the disposal of waste: Recycling Bins and Compost Bins.
  • Recycling education:  There will be numerous “Recycling Stations” in high-traffic areas that will be staffed with “Recycling Ambassadors” who can answer questions about how to use the recycling and composting bins.
  • Renewable energy: Waste Management led the effort to recommend purchasing renewable energy from Arizona Public Services (APS) to power the entire Tournament. The electricity purchased will come from a variety of sources, including solar, wind, geothermal, biogas and biomass.
  • Water feature:  Waste Management will once again utilize its floating logo feature on the lake of the18th hole, reusing the letters from last year’s tournament. The sign will weigh more than eight tons and consist of approximately 140,000 used golf balls that would have otherwise been thrown away. Following the tournament, these balls will be donated to The First Tee, a local youth charity.
  • Greenopolis kiosks: Waste Management will encourage recycling by offering incentives through its Greenopolis kiosks, machines offering various retailer discount coupons to patrons who use them.
  • Solar-powered compactors:  Waste Management will utilize solar technology to help reduce energy use during the tournament. Sixty Waste Management solar-powered compactors along the course will allow patrons to dispose of their food waste more efficiently. These machines hold five times the amount of waste as a traditional non-compacting bin, which reduces the trips needed to service them. 
  • Solar-powered hospitality tent: Waste Management’s hospitality tent will be powered by electricity generated from a portable solar power unit provided by First Solar.
  • Greywater:  The use of “greywater” or wastewater generated from the concessionaire’s kitchens will be recycled for use in portable toilets. Last year this effort conserved 1,476 gallons of fresh water.
  • Compressed natural gas (CNG) trucks:  Waste Management will utilize four compressed natural gas (CNG) trucks to transport the waste and recycled materials that are collected during the tournament. The fuel in these trucks burns cleaner than a standard diesel truck and therefore will reduce fleet emissions associated with transportation.

In December 2011, Waste Management Phoenix Open was awarded “Best Title Sponsor Integration” by the PGA TOUR at the TOUR’s Tournament Advisory Council (TAC) Meeting for its 2011 tournament at TPC Scottsdale.  The tournament and title sponsor, Waste Management were recognized for the integration of their brand and all of their efforts related to sustainability through education, branding and messaging along the course. 

The tournament host Thunderbirds have raised more than $75 million for charities, with more than $45 million generated since 2004. The 2012 edition will mark the 77th playing of the event, making it one of the five oldest events on the PGA TOUR (not including the major championships). Title sponsor Waste Management, Inc., based in Houston, Texas, is the leading provider of comprehensive waste management services in North America. Through its subsidiaries, the company provides collection, transfer, recycling and resource recovery, and disposal services. It is also a leading developer, operator and owner of waste-to-energy and landfill gas-to-energy facilities in the United States. The company’s customers include residential, commercial, industrial, and municipal customers throughout North America. For more information on Waste Management visit or For more information on the Waste Management Phoenix Open, visit

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