SeaWorld gets greener

Written By Administrator On October 31, 2008

but it isn’t algae in the pools.

Busch Entertainment Corporation, owners of 10 theme parks including SeaWorld, has announced new Sea World initiatives to make the parks more eco-friendly, which is a hot topic these days. This isn’t anything new for Shamuland, but the new efforts take the drive further, right down to the sustainable salmon that guests — and the big whales — eat. So SeaWorld doesn’t just talk the talk, it, um, swims the swim?
Whatever, here’s the press release:

ORLANDO, Fla. Oct. 30 /PRNewswire/ — From shuttles fueled with hydrogen to dinner plates made from sugarcane, the 10 theme parks owned by Busch Entertainment Corporation (BEC) — including SeaWorld and Busch Gardens — are launching initiatives to tackle some of today’s most pressing environmental challenges in the areas of waste, water, food and fuel.

To view the Multimedia News Release, click here.

Eco-minded vacationers know and love the parks for a commitment to wildlife conservation that spans more than five decades, and can now see and support even more environmental efforts during a park visit.

“Our company is committed to environmental stewardship with our day-to-day business decisions,” said Jim Atchison, BEC’s President and Chief Operating Officer. “It’s not always the easy way or inexpensive way, but it is the right way.”

Culinary: Serving Sustainable Sustenance

All of the seafood served to guests — and even the salmon fed to Shamu — will be purchased from sustainably-managed fisheries that promote environmentally responsible stewardship. This change affects more than 220,000 pounds of seafood and is on track for completion by early 2009.

BEC works with the Marine Stewardship Council and Aquaculture Certification Council in sourcing sustainable seafood options. Both are international, non-profit organizations that promote environmentally responsible fishing, fish farms, processing and food safety.

Partnering with the Rainforest Alliance, the parks also serve coffee and chocolate purchased from growers who meet demanding social and environmental standards. This global certification program ensures food is farmed and harvested in ways that protect wildlife, habitats and people.

Waste Management: Going Beyond the Recycling Bin

These efforts extend past what’s on the plates … to the plates. While some of the plates, forks, knives and spoons in many of the park restaurants look and feel like plastic, they are actually made from renewable resources such as sugarcane and vegetable starch.

The first of the theme park companies to incorporate such efforts, BEC worked with suppliers for more than a year to identify new products that could meet the demanding needs of parks that accommodate millions of guests a year. Products must be microwavable, freezer-safe, oil-resistant and capable of handling hot or cold food and beverages … and made from renewable resources.

The new products will replace 12.5 million pieces of dinnerware the parks dispose of each year.

The parks recycle more than 50 percent of all their waste, including animal and construction waste as well as traditional recycled materials. In 2007, the parks recycled more than 1 million pounds of food waste by sending it to soil amendment and mulching operations instead of landfills. Building on this success, each park continues to expand aggressive recycling programs with innovative new applications.

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