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Exterior Side Angle of John Paul Jones Arena


John Paul Jones Arena is Fully Certified with the Virginia Green program as both an Attraction and a Conference & Meeting Center since 2007. The certification requires self-certification of efforts to reduce the environmental impacts of John Paul Jones Arena's operation and to continuously improve over time. To achieve this certification, John Paul Jones Arena has committed to and implemented the Virginia Green program’s core requirements:

  • Recycling
  • Minimized Disposables
  • Eliminated Use of Polystyrene
  • Conserving Energy & Water
  • Green Events & Meetings
  • Consumer Engagement
  • Green Meetings Featured in Sales Materials

Additionally, JPJ earned the 2014 Green Attraction of the Year from Virginia Green. Virginia Green is a network of tourism-related organizations and programs that are committed to reducing the environmental impacts of Virginia's tourism industry while promoting practical pollution prevention techniques.

During UVA basketball “Green Games” at John Paul Jones Arena, there are volunteers who monitor the composting, recycling, and landfill stations to help fans sort their waste and sweep the stadium following the basketball game for programs, recyclables, and compostable materials. Most recently in 2023, the group was able to divert more than 3,000 pounds of compost from four basketball games. During the Winter 2019-2020 Basketball Gameday Recycling Challenge, a waste diversion rate of 79% was achieved, placing UVA 1st in the ACC for diversion and 10th in the country. UVA won the 2018 Campus Engagement Case Study Competition Education and Awareness Campaign award for efforts supporting the Basketball GameDay Recycling Challenge at John Paul Jones Arena.

Outside of “Green Games”, all UVA Basketball games at John Paul Jones Arena use compostable products in all 19 suites and food waste from the kitchens serving the suites is also composted. The serving products are Eco-Products® provided by Aramark Catering. Within the student-athlete dining room, all kitchen food waste is composted.

In 2019, the sports lighting was upgraded to LED and the control system was replaced, improving efficiency and increasing control capability to benefit all users at the Arena while also reducing energy consumption.

Prior initiatives implemented at John Paul Jones Arena were promoted in a Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) Virginia Pollution Prevention Case Study for reducing costs while improving sustainability. Some highlights of the work include:

Lighting and lighting control upgrades

Building automation system optimization

Water efficiency upgrades

Landfill waste reduction

Green cleaning measures

A bioretention area for stormwater management.

Working and learning in a physical environment inspired by one of the nation's most renowned architectural and social innovators, the University of Virginia community has a strong commitment to the tenets and practices of sustainability. John Paul Jones Arena proudly supports this commitment and its responsibilities at all levels by implementing initiatives designed to actively address climate change and environmental deterioration.

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