Long Beach, Ont. Convention center operator pledges to reduce waste – Daily News
Global ASM, a Philadelphia-based operator of 325 stadiums, convention centers and other venues around the world, has embarked on a sustainability program that has a strong focus on reducing waste at its facilities.
The entertainment giant plans to tackle waste reduction through recycling, waste composting, water conservation, energy reduction, waterless urinals and plastic bottle disposal at Disposable.
âWe were looking to provide water refill stations instead of selling water in plastic bottles,â said company president and CEO Ron Bension.
When it comes to stadiums, there is a lot of trash to clean up.
A 2011 report of the Environmental Protection Agency estimates that an average college football game produces 50 to 100 tonnes of waste. On a larger scale, the EPA says American sports fans generate about 39 million pounds of packaging, paper cups, straws and other trash per year.
Bension said the newly created ASM Global Acts program will take effect immediately at five of its locations, including the Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center, the Ontario Convention Center and the Toyota Arena, also in Ontario.
The program also aims to increase worker diversity and support underfunded communities with educational resources and career development. For this purpose, the company offers an ASM Global Acts exchange.
âWe plan to implement the ASM Global Acts program at all sites we have under our leadership when it rolls out in 2022,â Bension said.
Much of the sustainability measures are cost neutral, he said, although they will save ASM money once they are fully implemented.
âOn a human level, our initiatives are rooted in our corporate culture and we do not see them as a cost,â he said. “At the community level, this may vary from site to site and will be funded by the ASM Foundation.”
ASM Global’s objectives
Protect the environment – Reduce waste from visitors and the operation of its facilities.
Invest in people – Create an inclusive environment throughout the company and stimulate career opportunities for current and future employees.
Strengthening communities – Increase philanthropic support in local communities.
Bension said ASM Global Acts is an extension of programs already in place at many of the company’s locations.
âThere is some of that going on in almost everyone,â he said. âSome of our buildings have won awards, for example, so we asked ourselves why can’t we do it everywhere? The idea was to create an umbrella organization that consolidates all the different programs into one.
This translates into more job opportunities. ASM plans to offer apprenticeship programs for the many types of jobs available on its sites.
âWe have a variety of openings for finance jobs, food and beverage jobs, security jobsâ¦ there are all kinds of opportunities,â Bension said.
The company’s philanthropy will provide support for food banks and after-school programs, as well as vaccination and COVID-19 testing.
âWe’re looking at sustainability, the environment, and the people who work for us as a whole,â Bension said. âOur stadiums are where people from the community come to participate in events, and it’s also where our employees live.â
The fallout from COVID-19
The company – created in November 2019 by the merger of AEG Facilities and SMG – has weathered the fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic as many live events were canceled or postponed during the health crisis.
The company’s portfolio includes stadiums, arenas, convention centers, theaters, equestrian centers and recreational venues. Staffing in many of these locations has been particularly affected.
âBefore COVID-19, we had almost 61,000 employees,â Bension said. “Right now we’re around 40,000â¦ but we’re getting ready again.”
Figures released on Friday by the California Department of Public Health show that the health crisis is far from over. More than 5.6 million cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed statewide. This translates to a daily average of 43,697 cases. Data further shows that 76,341 Californians have died from the virus.
Bension said her business used the downtime to focus on what she wanted to get going.
âWe brought in new faces to focus on new technology and marketing,â he said. âAnd we were able to sign long-term agreements for 27 new sites in which we operate or in which we invest. It is a testament to what we have done.
ASM expects operations to return to normal by the fourth quarter of 2022 – assuming the pandemic ends.
âWe are seeing cancellations in Europe,â Bension said. âBut for the future, things look good. We’re also seeing cancellations in the United States, but we have a very robust schedule. In fact, we don’t have enough openings to accommodate all the events.