MLB implores fans to go green with Challenge

September 19th, 2019

When Major League Baseball and Discovery Education first partnered up in January 2018, the goal was to make the intertwining of baseball and science as apparent as the overlap is ubiquitous, inspiring the next generation along the way.

Now, a little under two years after the launch and with students around the country flocking back into the classroom, brand new immersive assets have been added to further extend the partnership’s reach.

Some of the brand new content to Discovery Education’s services include information on the citizen scientist program, which demonstrates how students grades 2-5 can use science to improve the world around them; over 50 new instructional programs on engineering and biology; and Spanish-supported core-concept math video clips, among several other new additions.

“Discovery Education sends along its best wishes to educators and students everywhere for a great school year, and to help teachers make classroom instruction as impactful as possible, we’ve added exciting new content to all our digital services that will immerse students of all ages in teaching and learning,” said Pete Weir, Discovery Education chief product officer. “This effort is part of our ongoing effort to make sure our services and content continue to evolve and meet the changing needs of students worldwide."

But one component that has remained ongoing with success is the Global Sustainability Challenge, which helps to feature green technologies and programs in ballparks around the country. It’s provided not only an interactive method for fans to get involved but serves as a way to raise knowledge of the ongoing shift to cleaner, more renewable ways of life.

The awareness has been taken one step further by Paul Hanlon, MLB’s senior director of ballpark operations and sustainability. Hanlon was a guest speaker at this year’s Discovery Education Network Summer Institute, where he spoke to over 175 educators from six countries and more than 100 school districts on how MLB is trying to be at the forefront of the green wave and showing how it can extend to both the park and ballparks.

Take Randy McWilliams, for example. As senior director of facilities and engineering for Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres, McWilliams has prioritized maximizing the green efficiency of what goes on at the ballpark. That has manifested itself in the installation of solar panels atop the ballpark, which has saved the equivalent of 8,000 pounds of coal, as well as installing LED lights, which has cut the park's utility usage in half.

McWilliams is just one of many around the country, showing that STEM-related studies have aided the advancement of baseball in many more ways alongside the rise of programs like Statcast.

And now, Major League Baseball and Discovery are asking you, the fans, to get involved in the progress by taking part of a slew of challenges that range from reassessing the recycling practices in your home to capturing your own bit of the sun through homemade solar energy kits. All forms of challenges can be found on the Sustainability Challenge activity page.