The Sacramento Kings hosted a “Spotlight on Sustainability Night” during Monday’s game

  • Dan Cole

The California-based Sacramento Kings basketball team hosted its first “Spotlight on Sustainability Night” during Monday’s match with the Denver Nuggets. The evening was a celebration of sustainable and locally-grown agricultural practices.

Every season, the Sacramento Kings Foundation holds three “Impact Nights” that focus on health, sustainability and education highlighting local non-profit organisations.

On Monday, “using basketball an agent of change in the community” it offered the opportunity to Yolo Farm to Fork, a non-profit organisation dedicated to locally-grown food and healthy eating, to take the stage and engage the audience with its message of sustainability.

John Rinehart, Kings President of Business Operations said:  “Sustainability is one of our core values – in the region and at the Kings – and we’re passionate about how we can continue to reduce our impact on the planet”.

He explained: “Through our Spotlight Nights, we’re able to support the work of incredible non-profits by sharing our stage with over 17,000 fans to raise awareness.”

Student gardeners and their families from Yolo Farm to Fork talked about activities on “planting the seeds of healthy living” and educating children to grow their own food.

More specifically, the day featured 3 programmes: “Dig in Yolo”, which provides basic support for public and private school edible gardens from preschool through grade 6; “Growing Lunch”, which empowers student gardeners to harvest food they grow in their school gardens and deliver it to school cafeterias; “Go Visit a Farm”, a programme which takes 4rth through 6th grade students to visit local organic farms. 

The audience was also informed on best practices for growing in-season produce, composting techniques and incorporating farm-fresh food into school lunches and how sustainable food practices reduce negative environmental impact.

Last September, The Golden 1 Centre, the home of the Sacramento Kings received the LEED Platinum certificate- a global standard for measuring the sustainability of buildings and comes at four levels: certified, silver, gold, and platinum.

According to the Sacramento Kings Foundation, it is the first time that a Platinum LEED certification is awarded to an Indoor Sports Venue.

Among other sustainability features, the venue is powered entirely by solar energy, from a 1.2 megawatt (MW) rooftop system and an 11MW solar farm. For ventilation, the stadium uses a reduced energy cooling system and passive climate-controlled air.

Jerry Brown, Governor of California had welcomed the sustainability approach of the Sacramento Kings Foundation, and he has previously commented: “California has more green buildings than any other state in the nation and Sacramento's new arena is an example of the elegant design and construction we need to meet our ambitious climate goals”.