10/26/08 1:08 AM ET
Phils ramp up recycling efforts
Red Goes Green team helps fans at Citizens during Series
By Kevin Horan / MLB.com
The team -- with all 40 members wearing matching white-and-green shirts -- was working on behalf of Major League Baseball's efforts to implement an environmental protection strategy.Each half-inning, members of the team, which included Phillies ballgirls and local volunteers, made their way up and down the ballpark's aisles carrying clear plastic bags to collect fans' recyclable cups and bottles. By the fourth inning, Phillies ballgirl Christy Gordon said, the team had filled three bins with recyclable goods. The team will be collecting fans' recyclables here for Games 4 and 5 of the World Series, as well. Cleaning up the environment became a major initiative at Citizens Bank Park on April 30, when team president David Montgomery, Gov. Ed Rendell, Mayor Michael Nutter and officials from MLB announced the team's plan to go green. Ever since, the Red Goes Green team has been collecting recyclable materials from fans at Citizens Bank Park. The Philly fans have gradually come to recognize the importance of the team and recycling, Gordon said. "Usually, people would ask us, 'What are you guys doing?' Gordon recalled. "Now, people don't even ask. They just give us the bottles." The Phillies' efforts to go green can be seen all around the ballpark. Citizens Bank Park concessionaire Aramark uses frying oil that is recycled into bio-diesel fuel, and carry-out trays are made of 100 percent post-consumer fiber. The club has made an effort to limit condiment packaging waste by supplying dispensers instead. Perhaps the most visible part of the team's effort to go green are the 40 new 80-gallon recyclable containers that have been placed around the ballpark. "It's the opportunity to get the idea of recycling out to millions of people," MLB spokeswoman Kate Gibson said. "And so far, the fans have been really responsive."
Kevin Horan is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.