NEW YORK, Sept. 20, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- At the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) Annual Meeting today, leading sports and entertainment presenters AEG were recognized by former President Bill Clinton for their Commitment to Action to invest $1 billion to build Farmers Field, a 72,000-seat, downtown Los Angeles football stadium and event center. As part of AEG's commitment, the Los Angeles-based organization is working with partners, including the U.S. Green Building Council and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), to ensure that Farmers Field will be the most environmentally sustainable stadium in the world and the first stadium in the NFL to be LEED certified.
Through this Commitment to Action, AEG pledges to work closely with CGI to monitor environmental results and report back on progress. This comes on the heels of a bill passed by an overwhelming 80 percent majority of the California State Senate and Assembly that will require AEG to ensure that Farmers Field is 100 percent carbon neutral for all emissions generated from private automobile trips to and from the stadium and for Farmers Field to have the best ratio of fans to automobiles in all of the NFL. The stadium will prioritize on-site and local projects before purchasing carbon offsets to support local economic development while ensuring positive environmental and social impacts. In addition, as part of their Commitment to Action, AEG will go beyond legal requirements to achieve carbon neutrality for all emissions from energy consumption and mechanical operations of the stadium. Combining these commitments with additional measures, such as water conservation and robust waste and recycling programs, including the donation of durable goods and an in-house composting program, will create the nation's most comprehensive environmental program for an NFL stadium.
"The Clinton Global Initiative is a forum for visionary companies and leaders who are committed to designing a sustainable future for individuals, businesses and communities, by repurposing business methods and culture to solve critical global problems," said former President Bill Clinton. "AEG has proven to be the world's most environmentally conscious venue operators, and Farmers Field will be another true example of their mission to marry design, innovation, social responsibility and community engagement, resulting in a measurable impact for future generations. I commend AEG as a model socially responsible company that is the hallmark of CGI."
"Farmers Field will be an example of the next generation of sports and entertainment venues, where a world-class fan experience goes hand in hand with social and environmental responsibility," said Tim Leiweke, AEG president and CEO. "We have focused during the last four years on working with some of the most respected environmental organizations in the country to create a blueprint for the stadium and, through the AEG 1EARTH program, to create the most comprehensive environmental program in the sports and live entertainment industry. Our CGI Commitment to Action underscores AEG's dedication and accountability for making this vision a reality. We are honored to be recognized by President Clinton and this prestigious organization."
"Through Farmers Field, AEG is making the most environmentally responsible choice possible, with commitment beginning at the point of development," said S. Richard Fedrizzi, president, CEO and founding chairman, U.S. Green Building Council. "Investing in sustainable construction and weaving carbon and waste programs into the fabric of a venue, its operations and its surroundings creates the lowest impact on our environment and the greatest return for the company."
The Commitment to Action at CGI comes just weeks after the groundbreaking environmental components of the project helped garner the support of two of California's most respected environmental groups — the NRDC and the California League of Conservation Voters.
"NRDC applauds AEG's commitment operate the most energy efficient football stadium in the nation at Farmers field to develop a best-in-the-nation public transit infrastructure for fans and to offset the carbon emissions associated with all fan travel by cars and busses," said Allen Hershkowitz, PhD., senior scientist, Natural Resources Defense Council. "Given AEG's proven record as the worlds' greenest arena operators and their commitment to work with environmental and community groups in developing their plan, I have every confidence that this goal will be achieved."
"We are so proud to have a company in Los Angeles being honored by the Clinton Global Initiative for their proven track record of providing the most innovative solutions to environmental issues while also creating jobs and opportunities for the community," Mayor Villaraigosa said. "Their tireless commitment to innovative, environmental programs such AEG 1 EARTH has set the precedent for the sports and entertainment industry across the world to follow."
"Members of organizations across the city have come together to make Farmers Field a reality," said Los Angeles City Councilwoman Jan Perry. "We know that the entire city — even state — will benefit from the addition."
"Our focus locally lies not only on the environmental goals, but on the tens of thousands of jobs and tens of millions of economic benefits to the state," Speaker John A. Perez said. "AEG has been able to generate an opportunity for economic development without sacrificing our environmental standards."
"The construction of a news sports arena and convention center will create thousands of jobs and be an economic boost for the City of Los Angeles, the region and the state," Senator Alex Padilla said. "Unlike other stadium projects, this one will be built without any public funds and be built to unprecedented environmental standards."
AEG's plan is both environmental and economic. It is estimated that Farmers Field construction will create 23,000 jobs, including 12,000 full-time jobs during the construction process and 11,000 more permanent jobs at the convention center. The Los Angeles Convention Center modernization and expansion and Farmers Field project is projected to generate more than $600 million in total economic activity, raising more than $40 million in new city, county and state tax revenues.
"With record unemployment above the national average, the creation of 23,000 middle-class jobs for construction and hotel workers, stage hands, grips and janitors is critical to Los Angeles," said Maria Elena Durazo, executive secretary-treasurer of the Los Angeles Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO. "Our top priority is to get men and women back to work in a good job."
More information and a complete look at the 2010 AEG 1EARTH sustainability report are available at http://aegworldwide.com/about/companyoverview/aeg1earth#3.
AEG is one of the leading sports and entertainment presenters in the world. AEG, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Anschutz Company, owns or is affiliated with a collection of companies including over 120 facilities such as STAPLES Center (Los Angeles, CA), Best Buy Theater (Times Square, New York), Sprint Center, (Kansas City), Rose Garden Arena (Portland, OR), Target Center (Minneapolis, MN), Mercedes Benz Arena (Shanghai, China), MasterCard Arena (Beijing, China), O2 World Hamburg, Acer Arena (Sydney, Australia), The Globe arena (Stockholm, Sweden), O2 World arena (Berlin, Germany) and The O2 arena and entertainment district (London, England); sports franchises including the Los Angeles Kings (NHL) and two MLS franchises in addition to overseeing privately held management shares of the Los Angeles Lakers (NBA). AEG has created L.A. LIVE, a 4 million square foot / $2.5 billion downtown Los Angeles sports & entertainment district featuring Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE and Club Nokia, a 54-story, 1001-room convention "headquarters" destination (featuring The Ritz-Carlton, Los Angeles and JW Marriott Los Angeles at L.A. LIVE hotels and 224 luxury condominiums – The Ritz-Carlton Residences at L.A. LIVE – all in a single tower), the Regal Cinemas L.A. LIVE Stadium 14, "broadcast" facilities for ESPN, along with entertainment, restaurant and office space and developed The Home Depot Center in Carson, California designated as an "Official U.S. Olympic Training Site" by the United States Olympic Committee that includes major facilities for soccer, tennis, track & field, cycling and other sports. AEG Sports owns and operates a variety of events and tours and AEG Live is the world's second largest live entertainment, concert promotion and touring companies. The organization is also developing additional arenas in China and arenas in Stockholm and Las Vegas In addition to Farmers Field in downtown Los Angeles. In 2010, AEG launched its AEG 1EARTH environmental program with the announcement of 2020 environmental goals and the release of the industry's first sustainability report. The groundbreaking report contains metrics collected on resources consumed and wastes generated at 20 facilities from AEG's global network of venues. The report also highlights success stories such as the over 3,000 solar panels on the roof of STAPLES Center and Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE For additional information, visit www.aegworldwide.com.
About the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI):
Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) convenes global leaders to devise and implement innovative solutions to some of the world's most pressing challenges. Since 2005, CGI Annual Meetings have brought together nearly 150 current and former heads of state, 18 Nobel Prize laureates, hundreds of leading CEOs, heads of foundations, major philanthropists, directors of the most effective nongovernmental organizations, and prominent members of the media. These CGI members have made nearly 2,000 commitments, which have already improved the lives of 300 million people in more than 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued in excess of $63 billion. The 2011 Annual Meeting will take place Sept. 20–22 in New York City.
This year, CGI also convened CGI America, a meeting focused on developing ideas for driving economic growth in the United States. The CGI community also includes CGI U, which hosts an annual meeting for undergraduate and graduate students, and CGI Lead, which engages a select group of young CGI members for leadership development and collective commitment-making. For more information, visit www.clintonglobalinitiative.org.