NFL Green looks to plant 100 trees in El Rio Acres

click to enlarge NFL Green looks to plant 100 trees in El Rio Acres
(Arizona Super Bowl LVII Host Committee/Submitted)
The Arizona Super Bowl LVII Host committee kicks off its NFL Green events.

The Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee will plant 100 new trees at the El Rio Acres neighborhood in Tucson as a part of the NFL Green program for Super Bowl LVII.

According to a statement from the NFL, “NFL Green is the NFL’s sustainability program which aims to reduce the environmental impact of events and leave a positive ‘green’ legacy in host communities.”

NFL Green and the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee kicked off their events on Oct. 18 in Phoenix. The greening projects will also happen all around the Valley, with plans for projects in Tempe, Mesa, Goodyear, Glendale and Fountain Hills. While Super Bowl LVII will be played in Glendale, NFL Green ensures the whole state of Arizona benefits from the Super Bowl festivities, with greening projects planned in Flagstaff and Tucson.  

“We are excited about the project in Tucson because as the host committee, one of our goals is to leave a positive legacy long after Super Bowl LVII is played, and one of the great ways we can do that is by planting trees,” said Jay Parry, president and chief executive officer of the Arizona Super Bowl Host Committee.

NFL Green is scheduled to plant the 100 trees at the El Rio Acres neighborhood on Dec. 3, and the work will be done in one day by 50 members of the Arizona Super Bowl Committee’s volunteer program. The trees that will be planted are low water usage trees such as velvet mesquite, desert willow and oak trees. 

“Planting trees combats the urban heat zone and can really help us fight against climate change that’s happening,” Parry said.

“El Rio neighborhood is a very high priority for the city of Tucson climate action and adaptation plan, which really works to address the increase in temperatures. And so we understand from working with our partners in Tucson, is that that neighborhood has less than a 7% tree canopy coverage and the goal for the community is to get to 15%.”

With the trees shading the street and neighborhoods, temperatures could feel anywhere from 20 to 45 degrees cooler, according to a study done by the Environmental Protection Agency. 

“We’re excited to be able to contribute positively to improving that (lower temperatures), specifically for that neighborhood that feels like they really need it,” Parry said. 

“We love that there’s a bike trail that goes right by there (El Rio Acres), and there’s also the Arizona School for the Deaf and Blind, and a park. Obviously, a neighborhood gets a lot of use from a lot of different constituents, and we felt like it was a really good area and project for us to undertake as the Super Bowl host committee, along with our partners at the NFL green.”