- Amazon has purchased the naming rights to a Seattle sports arena, renaming it “Climate Pledge Arena.”
- Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos announced on Instagram Thursday that the company chose not to name it Amazon Arena so that the name would serve “as a regular reminder of the urgent need for climate action.”
- Bezos said the arena will be the first “net zero carbon certified arena in the world” and will generate zero waste from its operations or its events. The hockey ice will also use reclaimed rainwater.
- Climate Pledge Arena was previously known as KeyArena and once housed the former NBA franchise the Seattle SuperSonics. The WNBA’s Seattle Storm will return to the arena once renovations are completed, as will Seattle’s new, yet-to-be-named NHL expansion team.
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Amazon just bought the naming rights to a Seattle sports arena, renaming it “Climate Pledge Arena.”
Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s CEO, announced the change in an Instagram post on Thursday, saying its name was chosen “as a regular reminder of the urgent need for climate action.”
Bezos said the arena will be the first “net zero carbon certified arena in the world” and will generate zero waste from its operations or its events. The facility will also use reclaimed rainwater for its ice system “to create the greenest ice in the NHL,” Bezos said.
In a press release about the renaming, Amazon outlined some other climate-focused changes its making to the arena:
- The arena will be powered solely by electricity and will have on-site solar panels
- Nearly 75% of the arena’s food will be locally sourced and unused food will be donated
- Tickets to WNBA and NHL games can also be used for free public transit rides
- Single-use plastics will be banned, according to NHL Seattle, and there will be no trash cans on-site, only recycling and composting bins
- The arena’s 44-million-pound roof will be reused in the new construction
The facility, currently called the New Arena at Seattle Center but formerly known as KeyArena, was the home of the Seattle SuperSonics NBA team, and is the home of the Seattle Storm WNBA team, which temporarily relocated to University of Washington’s arena.
Beginning in 2021, the area will house Seattle’s new, yet-to-be-named NHL expansion team. The team’s ownership began an $800 million renovation of the facility in 2018, but the project’s cost has since reached $900 million. The facility likely won’t reopen until June 2021.
Bezos has shown an interest in the sports world before. He attended the men’s Wimbledon final in July 2019 and was spotted at the Super Bowl in 2019 and 2020. Last November, the Washington Post reported that Bezos may be interested in buying the NFL team the Seattle Seahawks. While the team isn’t currently for sale, the Post reported at the time that it may be looking for a new owner after the death of its previous owner, Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen.