In the Lime Light
IN ADDITION TO creating healthy communities, highlighting sustainable efforts can generate positive brand identity.
NBCUniversal created the “Green is Universal” campaign that encompasses sustainability programs—from movie and television production to theme parks.
From TV sitcom “Superstore” using responsibly harvested Meranti plywood for sets, to the film “Mary Queen of Scots” reusing office supplies from Universal Pictures’ film “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom” and donating props and furniture to a hospice charity after production, NBCUniversal’s sustainable practices also extend to its attractions.
Universal Creative connected with Southern California Edison when designing The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Universal Studios Hollywood incorporated energy-efficient designs, saving around 2 million kilowatt-hours of electricity a year. The achievement (along with other energy saving efforts) earned NBCUniversal a Cool Planet Award from The Climate Registry and Southern California Edison.
In addition, the switch to LED lighting fixtures throughout theme park operations in both Hollywood and Orlando now save millions of kilowatt-hours annually.
Theme parks on both coasts use recycled water for landscape irrigation. Control system sensors monitor real-time weather data and ground moisture to adjust watering schedules. That’s important when caring for the more than 1,200 live trees Universal Creative incorporated into the new “Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure” roller coaster at Universal’s Islands of Adventure. Meanwhile, Universal’s landscaping team uses coffee grounds to supplement nutrients in potting soil.
Universal Orlando Resort implemented an experimental system using thermal solar to preheat water at Thunder Falls Terrace, a restaurant in Universal’s Islands of Adventure, reducing the need for natural gas water heating by 35%. Food waste from more than 30 restaurants daily is placed in an on-site compactor and then sent to an anaerobic digester to generate energy. Additionally, Universal Orlando has its own material recycling facility that separates plastic, glass, and aluminum gathered from 2,500 recycling locations throughout Universal Studios Florida, Universal’s Islands of Adventure, and Universal’s Volcano Bay.
Making a sustainable difference? Let Funworld Managing Editor Scott Fais know. Drop him a line at [email protected].
Simple Steps to Start
NBCUniversal had to start somewhere. Here are a few ideas attractions of all sizes can use to get started and make a significant difference:
- Establish a “green team.” Employees who help develop plans will take ownership of implementing sustainable initiatives.
- Develop two plans: First, examine an attraction’s own operations and identify opportunities where change will benefit the organization. Second, educate employees and engage them to make positive choices.
- Contact local utility partners to learn what sustainable programs already exist and how your attraction can benefit.
- Reach out to other business leaders and industries in your area to learn how they make a sustainable difference and learn which vendors (recyclers, solar panel system suppliers, equipment manufacturers, etc.) they’ve partnered with successfully.
- Share your successes like the “Green is Universal” initiative through signage in restrooms, food venues, and information online that tells the story of your responsible planning. To see how “Green is Universal” promotes its sustainability message, see the infographic above from Universal Orlando Resort and visit www.greenisuniversal.com.