OVO Hydro launches campus-wide ‘Stack Cup’ introduction for SEC

Colin Banks, Head of Sponsorship & Partnerships, OVO Energy. Debbie McWilliams, Director of Live Entertainment, SEC. John McNeil, Head of Commercial, SEC Food

THE Scottish Event Campus (SEC), has today announced that it will eliminate single use plastic cups at live events by introducing reusable ‘Stack Cups’. The move will save the campus 2m cups per year and reduce its carbon footprint by 1,500 tonnes in the next 10 years. Stack Cups will be introduced for the first time at Planet Earth II which is running this weekend, Sunday 27 March, at the OVO Hydro. They will be in use for seating areas with the SEC using compostable versions throughout the rest of the venue. The cups will then be extended into the SEC Armadillo from 31 March 2022 at Ru Paul’s Drag Race.

The milestone moment forms a key part of the SEC’s journey towards net zero by 2030 as part of its wider sustainability strategy. This includes a sustainable food initiative championing local suppliers and reducing food waste to below 1%, and a move towards attaining Greener Arena Certification for the OVO Hydro and SEC Armadillo. The Stack Cup initiative is supported by OVO Hydro sponsor OVO Energy, as well as SEC Food, and A.G.Barr. The partnership will create five jobs at Stack Cup’s centre in Glasgow. 

Chosen primarily for their sustainability credentials, Stack Cups will also benefit gig goers, as they are incredibly easy to carry, allowing fans to hold multiple cups in each hand as they return to their seats, meaning there’s far less chance of spilled beer.

Fans can get involved from this weekend by following a simple four step process:

  1. Pay £1 deposit for a Stack Cup at the bar.
  2. Enjoy their drink of choice.
  3. Swap their used cup at the bar for a clean one on their next order.
  4. Return cups to a redemption point to receive a £1 refund or place in a collection bin at the end of the night to help SEC support environmental and charitable initiatives.

Debbie McWilliams, Director of Live Entertainment at SEC, said: “The SEC is committed to working towards a greener future for live events, and the removal of single use plastic cups in the OVO Hydro and SEC Armadillo is a huge step forward in our sustainability journey. Switching to Stack Cups will help us save 2m single use plastic cups per year and reduce our carbon footprint by 1,500 tonnes over ten years. The initiative will have a positive impact on fans’ experience, as they are convenient and easy to carry. It’s never been easier to get on board with making live events more sustainable.”

Colin Banks, Head of Sponsorship & Partnerships at OVO Energy, added: “ At OVO, we’re committed to establishing purposeful partnerships which reflect our commitment to help get people closer to lower carbon living. We absolutely share The SEC’s ambitions to work hard today to implement initiatives and solutions that ensure a lower-impact future for live events.  Removing single use plastic cups in the OVO Hydro is a significant step in an ongoing journey with The SEC and we’ll continue to work together to identify practical ways in which to make low impact live events the norm for Scotland’s home of live entertainment.”

Today’s announcement has been praised by Zero Waste Scotland, who exist to lead Scotland to use products and resources responsibly, with a focus on where they can have the biggest impact on climate change.

Iain Gulland, Chief Executive of Zero Waste Scotland said: “In Scotland, our collective consumption of products and materials causes around 80 per cent of our carbon footprint. This is something we need to act upon.” 

“It’s imperative that we take steps to reduce our reliance on the earth’s precious resources and keep existing materials in circulation – that is the essence of a circular economy.”

“Single use plastics are a particular blight on the environment and Zero Waste Scotland works with a number of businesses, across the country and beyond, to implement more sustainable solutions, which is why we’re thrilled to see the OVO Hydro’s campus-wide move towards reusable cups. As an iconic venue, beloved the world over, this move is sure to set a precedent for other hospitality venues, and concertgoers alike, to seek out more sustainable options when it comes to single-use plastics.”

The OVO Hydro is expected to welcome over 1million visitors this year thanks to a busy schedule of shows, with over 10% more events programmed for 2022 than in an average year. Fans will be treated to an array of A-list stars, including: Kevin Bridges, Billie Eilish, Diana Ross, Queen and Adam Lambert and Dua Lipa.

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