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Target Field continues to be MLB's greenest park

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins announced the results of their green efforts at Target Field in 2012 on Monday, as they continue to seek ways to improve the sustainability of the ballpark.

The Twins became the first professional sports franchise to attain LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) Silver Certification for the operation and maintenance of Target Field in 2010 and the stadium was named the Greenest Ballpark in America for the organization's efforts.

Since the ballpark opened in 2010, the Twins have continued to keep it green through a variety of environmental efforts.

"The Minnesota Twins organization believes our future success -- both on and off the field -- is built on a business model that embraces operational efficiency, environmental stewardship and social responsibility," Twins president Dave St. Peter said. "Through the following efforts, we have reduced our overall impact on the environment while we continue to seek ways to improve the sustainability of Target Field."

One of the ways the Twins use local natural resources is by capturing and reusing rainwater. Through a custom-designed rain water recycle system provided by Minneapolis-based Pentair, the Twins captured, purified and reused more than 1.84 million gallons of rainwater, reducing the use of municipal water at Target Field in 2011 and 2012.The majority of the recycled rainwater was used to wash down the seating bowl attached to the main concourse.

The Twins also did their part by recycling, as they kept more than 2,559 tons of waste out of local landfills the past two years through recycling, composting and sending trash to the Hennepin Energy Recovery Center.

Unused food was also donated to local charities with more than 55,000 hot dogs and brats, 8,000 hamburgers and 3,500 chicken breasts being donated through a partnership with Rock and Wrap It Up! Inc.

The Twins also partner with Minnesota State Parks and Trails in a program in which every time a Minnesota Twins pitcher breaks the bat of an opposing player, Minnesota State Parks and Trails plants 100 trees in one of the 73 Minnesota state parks and recreation areas on or along one of the 21 Minnesota state trails.

In 2012, Twins pitchers broke 170 bats, which means that 17,000 trees will be planted in the spring of 2013. It was two more bats than in 2011, when Minnesota hurlers broke 168 bats to lead to the planting of16,800 trees this past spring.

"As we move forward, the Twins are committed to maintaining our focus on environmental sustainability," St. Peter said. "While we can always improve, we're proud of our efforts in 2012 and are looking forward to doing even more in 2013."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger.
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