Electricity and Super Bowl XLVIII: Will the lights stay on?

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Fans will soon pack MetLife Stadium for Super Bowl XLVII.  The National Football League's 2013-2014 season championship game will be held on February 2 at 6:30 PM (Eastern). Following the power outage during last year's Super Bowl, organizers of this year's event are taking extra precautions to avoid disruptions to the East Rutherford, New Jersey stadium's electricity supply.  At the same time, organizers are promoting the environmental aspects of the power supply for this year's game.

During Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana, a power outage moments after the beginning of the second half of play caused many of the stadium lights and systems to go dark.  Between restoring power supply, rebooting computer systems, and letting stadium lighting cool and return to full power, it took 34 minutes for play to resume.  Subsequent investigation revealed that the outage occurred when load-monitoring equipment had opened a breaker after detecting an abnormality in the system.

Organizers hope this year's championship is free from such disruption.  MetLife Stadium and the rest of the Meadowlands Sports Complex is served by utility Public Service Electric & Gas Co. or PSE&G.  Two power lines feed into the substation serving the complex, and on-site generators add additional capacity.  PSE&G has been reported as expecting the game to draw as much as 20 megawatts of power, and the utility, NFL, and stadium owner have collaborated on measures and testing to ensure continuity of service during the big game.

Meanwhile, PSE&G's parent PSEG has partnered with the NFL Environmental Program to source renewable energy for the game.  PSEG has agreed to purchase and retire a renewable energy credit, or REC, for every megawatt-hour of electricity used at the stadium, the AFC and NFC team hotels, and Super Bowl in Times Square.  240 solar RECs are slated to come from PSE&G's nearby 3-megawatt Kearny solar farm, as well as 5,700 additional RECs from the 7.5-megawatt Jersey Atlantic Wind Farm near Atlantic City.

Beyond electricity, event organizers have committed that all the waste oil generated from food production during the game will be processed into biodiesel fuel by Tri-State Biodiesel, and that all other food waste will be composted.

Presumably, most fans' attention will be focused on the game.  Will the organizers' measures prevent power outages in an environmentally friendly manner?

Topics:  Electricity, Football, Super Bowl, Utilities Sector

Published In: Art, Entertainment & Sports Updates, Energy & Utilities Updates, Environmental Updates

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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