SeaWorld San Diego was recently honored with the city of San Diego's Outstanding Achievement Award for its 2016 waste reduction and recycling efforts. Recognized as a Southern California leader in recycling, the park has also received 19 Recycler of the Year awards from the city since 1994 and is a nine-time recipient of the California Waste Reduction Award.
This most recent award praised SeaWorld as an "outstanding organization who’s continuing innovative waste reduction and recycling efforts helps San Diego get closer to achieving its zero waste goals and serves as an example of a great community partner."
The award highlighted the park's innovative efforts in the recycling of nearly 43,000 pounds of stainless steel and more than 56,000 pounds of reusable pallets. The park was also lauded for using nearly 10,000 gallons of melted snow from its Christmas Celebration's Snow Hill wintery play area for watering landscape. In addition, SeaWorld was recognized for donating of 12,000 pounds of fish excess, which would normally have been rendered, to a local wildlife refuge center.
SeaWorld continues to embrace initiatives that address some of today's most pressing environmental challenges in the areas of waste, water and food. Every year, the park recycles millions of pounds of paper and plastic products, metals, greenery, food scraps, pallets, construction demolition debris and batteries, as well as more traditional recyclable materials. In 2011, SeaWorld eliminated single-use plastic bags from gift shops. In 2013, the park stopped using polystyrene tableware and flatware in its restaurants and ambassador cafeterias.
Photo (l to r): Angela Colton, deputy director of San Diego's environmental services; Ken Prue, manager of San Diego's solid waste recycling program; Buddy Burton, SeaWorld San Diego director of safety; Julie Byford, SeaWorld San Diego environmental manager; Darren Greenhaigh, assistant director of San Diego's environmental services; Marilyn Hannes, SeaWorld San Diego park president; Shari Sehlhorst, SeaWorld San Diego environmental manager; and Chris Ward, San Diego City Councilmember (District 3).