Green Sheet Issue 28
Summer 2016
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Summer Green Sheet 
 Congratulations to our two Broadway Green Captain  Tony nominees: Michael Shannon from LONG DAY's  JOURNEY INTO NIGHT and Adrienne Warren from  SHUFFLE  ALONG. As Green Captains, you are always  winners to us! 

 This year the BGA purchased offsets for the electricity for  the entire Tony Awards rehearsal period and telecast and  also purchased offsets for the arranged cast and presenter transportation. The offsets were purchased from Native Energy and will help fund the Capricorn Ridge Wind Project.

Everything you ever wanted to know about switching to rechargeable batteries

By John Curvan, WICKED
The question often comes up if rechargeable batteries will work in wireless microphones. The simple answer is yes. WICKED, the Broadway musical, switched to re-chargeables eight years ago.  They work great.  As a result, there is a huge reduction of batteries thrown away and, best of all, it saves the production thousands of dollars.  WICKED was one of the first shows to make the change, but in the ensuing years many other productions have followed.  Because it works. A greener change that also saves green.
Will It Work for You? Some advice:
Every theatre is different, every production is different.  The technology of batteries has evolved rapidly in the last decade and today modern rechargeables are as reliable and have as much power as standard alkaline batteries. There is a rechargeable battery made for every application where an alkaline battery would have been used in the past.  Try starting small.  Buy a few rechargeables and try them on a transmitter used in smaller roles.  Pick a character that comes off stage, where you can change batteries if necessary.  If the production is extremely long, you may need to change batteries at intermission.  On WICKED, we use Sennheiser SK2012 transmitters.  They use one AA battery.  We currently use Ansmann 2800mAh rechargeables.  We power up at 6:30 and they are still running strong after the curtain call at 10:45.

Plan for success – and charging time:
When we were planning on using rechargeables on our show, we knew we had to deal with five show weekends.  Rechargables need time to recharge, usually five to six hours.  We knew we would need two sets of batteries.  At any given time, one set is being used and the other is being recharged.  Since we have 40 transmitters, we have 80 batteries. We color them to keep from getting the two sets confused.  You can use nail polish or model paint to mark them.

Conditioning and replacement:
Every battery has as an output, often measured in milliamps per hour, or mAh.  The AAs we use have a 2800 mAh rating.  Every time you recharge a cell, it loses a bit of that capacity.  You can minimize this loss by regularly conditioning them. Every twenty charging cycles -- which works out to be every five weeks -- we condition the cells.  Conditioning takes 24 hours.  The chargers will fully charge, fully drain, allow a cooling period and finally, recharge the batteries. Even with regular conditioning, the capacity of rechargeables will fail.  We know from experience that we need at least 1600 mAh to complete the show.  When cells fall below that capacity, they will begin failing on stage.  So, time to replace those and recycle the old one. Luckily, the Broadway Green Alliance pays for rechargeable battery recycling a few times a year. That way, WICKED will always be a very green show. Encourage your show to make the change!

Questions? Email


Chapter Reports:

Chicago Green Theatre Alliance

The CGTA recently held a combined textile and e-waste collection event in the Steppenwolf parking lot (pictured above) and it went very well! Storefront theatres and freelance costume designers were able to take advantage of the costume exchange to build their stock and dozens of companies cleared out space in their offices and shops. They collected about 3 gaylords of e-waste and about 25 large garbage bags of textiles that were all re-used or recycled.

Off-Broadway Chapter

Our Off-Broadway chapter is putting its focus on closing greener. About to go out to the Off-Broadway community is a survey to find out how Off-Broadway theaters dispose of their sets. Then comes the brainstorming about how we might increase the sharing of resources in the community. This chapter is also planning a gathering at the Public Theatre on September 12th to release the results of the survey and publicize resources to help shows close greener. At this event information will also be available about the greening grants which have a deadline of October 14, 2016.  


Jade Zaroff of Emerson College wins
2016 College Green Captain prize

for her second year organizing a campus-wide green event, the Emerson Green Gala. Jade tells us:  "The Emerson Green Gala was a huge success and is now officially an annual event at Emerson College! This year's event began with a reception that included informational booths, live music, recycled playbills, organic #loveyourmother Metawear T-shirts and merchandise from BGA as well as free vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free food provided by the college. The show followed, presenting over 150 students including lots of high-quality Emerson talent competing for a prize of $1000 and featuring 8 guest judges. The ultimate goal of the competition was to join the Emerson and Boston community to celebrate our planet through diverse forms of inspiring artistic expression. There was also a film competition in which students had to create a 3 minute film showcasing progressive steps towards environmental awareness — the winner was revealed at the beginning of the show. Film judges include Kevin Bright (Emerson alum & Producer of Friends) David Alan Basche (Emerson alum & Actor on The Exes) and Alysia Reiner (Actress on Orange is the New Black and How to Get Away with Murder). All ticket proceeds from the gala went towards the Emerson Green Enhancement Fund." Congratulations, Jade!

For more information on the BGA College Green Captain program or to find out how to apply for the 2017 prize go here. 



Friday, June 17, 2016 – 12 to 1pm is Daylight Hour!

Daylight Hour is an international social media campaign to raise awareness about the benefits of using daylight in lieu of electric lighting. This initiative was created as a response to a simple, but important trend. Lights are kept on even when offices receive more than enough daylight to ensure a comfortable work environment. This is a critical issue, as the time-of-day when daylight is most readily available coincides with peak demand - the time when our dirtiest power plants are activated to meet our needs. Hundreds of offices around the world, representing over 70 million square feet, have already signed up to participate in this Friday's initiative! On Friday they will all turn off the lights in day-lit spaces for one hour to showcase the role daylight can play in lighting our offices, reducing our environmental footprint, and saving money. 
Participants will show off their creative sides by posting about their involvement on social media using #daylighthour. We hope you will participate too!

Don't forget to visit the new re-fashioNYC Housing Works textile bin in the Equity Lounge in the Sky Lobby of 1560 Broadway. Please bring your Equity card or a picture ID to enter the building and drop off your textiles at the Equity Lounge on weekdays from 6 am to 6 pm. Re-fashioNYC also has donation receipts available at the Lounge desk. 

USITT 2016 had a slate of 8 green sessions! 

This past March, we were proud to participate in the United States Institute of Theatre Technology's 2016 conference in Salt Lake City, Utah.  This year's conference featured a slate of eight sessions focused on greener theatre.  The green sessions started on Wednesday with an informative talk about LED retrofits and the day ended with a Greener Production Round-Table where theatre folks from around the country weighed in with questions and suggestions for making theatre greener. 

Thursday brought a session all about finding money for green projects called Green for Green: Sustainability Funding. At this session Ellen Jones and Pegi Marshall described how they successfully received funding for research on green scenic techniques and zero waste scene studios respectively. Thursday evening brought an informative case study on greener theatre buildings with Where Sustainability Meets High Performance

Early Friday morning it was amazing to see more than 75 eager participants at the Towards a Zero Waste Scenic Studio and a panel full of ideas for getting to zero waste. PLASA's Richard Cadena led that afternoon's Evaluating Sustainable Lighting Fixtures and then came the super-popular Greener Model Building Workshop with the great Donyale Werle leading a full and very hands on session. USITT came to a close on Saturday and included a session called Sustainable Costume Design Round-table with a panel of costume shop folks and a long list of ways to make greener costumes. 

The BGA also had a booth in the Show Expo and signed up dozens of prospective College Green Captains and answered lots of green theater questions. We are looking forward to even more green sessions at USITT 2017 in St. Louis. 


6 steps you can take to help stop climate change
(from our friends at NRDC):

1. Speak up!

What’s the single biggest way you can make an impact on global climate change? Talk to your friends and family, and make sure your representatives are making good decisions and pushing for large-scale action on climate issues. 

2. Power your home with renewable energy.

Choose a utility company that generates at least half its power from wind or solar and has been certified by Green-e Energy, an organization that vets renewable energy options. If that isn’t possible for you, take a look at your electric bill; many utilities now list other ways to support renewable sources on their monthly statements and websites.

3. Weatherize, weatherize, weatherize.

Building heating and cooling account for almost half of home energy use. You can make your space more energy efficient by sealing drafts and ensuring it’s adequately insulated. You can also claim federal tax credits for many energy-efficiency home improvements.

4. Invest in energy-efficient appliances.

Since they were first implemented nationally in 1987, efficiency standards for dozens of appliances and products have kept 2.3 billion tons of carbon dioxide out of the air. When shopping for refrigerators, washing machines, and other appliances, look for the Energy Star label. It will tell you which are the most efficient.

5. Actually eat the food you buy—and make less of it meat.

Approximately 10 percent of U.S. energy use goes into growing, processing, packaging, and shipping food—about 40 percent of which just winds up in the landfill. So, try not to waste food.  And, since livestock products are among the most resource-intensive to produce, eating meat-free meals can make a big difference, too.

6. Buy better bulbs.

LED lightbulbs use up to 80 percent less energy than conventional incandescents. They’re also cheaper in the long run: A 10-watt LED that replaces your traditional 60-watt bulb will save you $125 over the lightbulb’s life.

Copyright © 2016 Broadway Green Alliance, All rights reserved.

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