Going Green on The Felt: partypoker On Cutting Carbon Emissions At Live Events Going Green on The Felt: partypoker On Cutting Carbon Emissions At Live Events

This series of articles has been designed to focus on the positive steps taken by poker operators as they aim reduce their carbon footprint at live events and beyond—in the full understanding that there is always more that can be done.

With so many moving parts that need to be considered when putting together a live poker tournament, how much of a priority is putting on a sustainable event?

The World Series of Poker (WSOP) was the first operator to talk through its initiatives as part of the new pokerfuse series, “Going Green on The Felt.” The WSOP said that they recycle everything put into the bins during the Series at a back of house location—something players may not be aware of. The WSOP has also introduced water fountains 5 gallon water jugs in the tournament rooms thanks to its ongoing partnership with the One Drop Foundation.

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Next up is partypoker. After asking the company what it is doing to make its live events more sustainable, it is notable that what it deems as important is very different from what the WSOP is doing. This is no bad thing, as it is interesting to see what different operators see as the main challenges to putting on a green event and what they are doing to achieve this.

“We have cancelled members cards as these are costly, heavy and difficult to ship between events,” Nick Whiten, representing partypoker LIVE told pokerfuse. “Players simply now need to download the app, which contains all their reg. info and access to benefits.”

Membership cards allow players who are attending casinos to enter into events seamlessly. A move to digital is a great step from partypoker, but it looks like its partner casino Dusk Till Dawn in Nottingham still uses plastic membership cards, according to the Terms and Conditions page. Clarity surrounding whether Dusk Till Dawn will also move to digital membership cards is still to be decided.

“We are trying to move less equipment around the world and support the local economy. For example, in Brazil we manufactured 5 new chip sets and tables in the country rather than carrying existing inventory with us.”

When it comes to talking about the main barriers for live tour operators to make their events more environmentally friendly, partypoker believes the biggest hurdle is the fact that “people like to travel and play poker from all corners of the planet, so we feel the biggest issue today is the collective carbon footprint. Our strategy is to attract more local players to our event stops, which in turn reduces the footprint.”

When asking partypoker about how environmentally friendly events can become a priority for the operator, Whiten said: “We’re looking to recruit local dealers and staff where possible, again sourcing resources on a more local level and reducing travel.”

According to a BBC article on climate change and aviation, it was reported that the aviation industry accounts for 2% of all “global human-induced greenhouse gas emissions.” It was revealed that less than half of the world’s top airlines give passengers the opportunity to offset the carbon emissions.

Using a carbon footprint calculator it is estimated that a return flight from the UK to Las Vegas for one person generates 3.2 tones of C02. The maximum amount of C02 a person should produce in order to help reverse climate change is calculated at 0.600 tones. On average the amount of CO2 a European citizen produces each year is 8.4 tons of C02.

“We strongly recommend all passengers to use high-quality projects to offset their own CO2 emissions as an individual contribution to addressing climate change,” Michael Gill, a director from the international aviation trade body IATA, told the BBC.

partypoker’s plan to reduce its travel costs at live events will hopefully have a big impact on the company’s carbon footprint moving forward. It will be interesting to track current emissions used at live events and compare it to new ventures they are planning by using local economies.

A look into partypoker’s marketing campaigns on a local level, as well as documenting the uptake on local players attending events, would be interesting statistics to see.

So, what else can partypoker being doing? Is cutting carbon emissions enough? Do players want to see recycling faculties and water facilities at events like what the WSOP are doing?

If you have any comments on the article or would like to be interviewed as part of this series please email samantha@pokerfuse.com or @sambevington on Twitter.