Food Inspiration embarked on an invigorating trip to the Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle. The construction and revamp of this indoor stadium for 17,000 visitors came with a hefty price tag of one billion dollars, thanks in part to a substantial contribution from Amazon's founder, Jeff Bezos. The investment appears to have yielded a peek into a stadium of the future. Here's the scoop from Food Inspiration.

We're gearing up for a Seattle Kraken ice hockey game; a team that calls the heart of the city home. This evening, the stadium which opened in fall 2022, welcomes around 17,000 sport fans. The way we all smoothly enter, without any dissonance or police supervision, is downright impressive. Ticket scanning at the entrance is a breeze, with minimal lines and a warm welcome. After check-in, attendants trained to welcome rather than frisk guests make the experience a pleasant one. What a relief.

Once inside, we're met with a wall completely covered in plants - a vertical garden proudly displaying The World's First Net Zero Carbon Arena logo. The spaces are open and airy, creating a friendly atmosphere. Fans are calm, and there's no deafening roar. Taking the elevator up a floor, we find a bar offering craft beers - Pacific Northwest crafts with an impressive twelve local offerings on tap. Craft beers are served in recyclable aluminum cups, many of which fans take home for reuse. Collecting cups is encouraged; throwing them away is a no-no. Waste is almost non-existent in stadium corridors.


Further on, there's the Impossible Burger outlet, serving meat made from plants. The Impossible Burger holds the title of The Official Burger of Climate Pledge Arena. Alongside it are four types of plant-based burgers, vegan chicken nuggets, and fries. A griddle showcases the preparation of smashed burgers with cheddar, and it’s a mouthwatering sight.

Food & Beverage commitments of the Climate Pledge Arena

The Arena is focusing on innovation and technology, local flavors and sustainable sources. Delaware North is the foodservice provider that runs most of the catering in the arena. The Climate Pledge Arena is committed to:

  • Sourcing 75% of food ingredients from within a 300-mile radius

  • House wines from Washington (and Oregon)

  • Craft beer sourced from Washington (and Oregon)

  • Produce certified USDA Organic where applicable

  • 100% eggs from cage-free hens

  • Seafood that aligns with Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Sustainable Seafood Watch rating

  • Antibiotic- and hormone-free proteins where applicable

  • Grass-fed beef where applicable

  • Plant-based proteins include vegan and vegetarian offerings

  • Coffee is ethically sourced by C.A.F.E. Practice standards, in collaboration with Conservation International

  • Heart-healthy oils

  • No trans fats or high-fructose corn syrup where applicable

Stadion catering at Climate Pledge Arena

Just Walk Out Technology

The stadium boasts a standout technological feature. Amazon's 'Just Walk Out’ technology is available in four outlets, including Starbucks. Guests scan their credit cards upon entry, make their orders, and stroll out. Those with an Amazon ID can even enter with a palm scan. Why is Starbucks here? It makes perfect sense when you realize that Seattle is home to the first Starbucks branch, which is still a Seattle tourist attraction. In fact, the world's largest coffee chain still calls Seattle home. Amazon's tech automatically records food and beverage purchases, saving visitors significant time.

At Climate Pledge Arena, food diversity is the name of the game. While traditional fast food typically dominates stadiums - burgers, hotdogs and fries - this arena boasts an impressive 22 different food outlets. From chicken to tacos, fish, pizza, sushi, burgers, desserts, poke bowls, fish & chips, the options are vast. Sixteen of these outlets offer vegetarian and vegan choices. Premium F&B spaces, like the Moët & Chandon Imperial Lounge, provide exclusive dining experiences. Notably, many outlets have shifted from counter service to self-service, enhancing the speed of service through multiple cash registers.

Jeff Bezos sets one condition

Amazon's founder, Jeff Bezos, dug deep into his pockets for his hometown, Seattle, where Amazon's headquarters resides. His significant contribution came with a condition: the Climate Pledge Arena had to be the first CO2-neutral sports stadium. In October 2022, the new stadium opened its doors and is on track to meet the promise of the Climate Pledge initiated by Amazon in 2019. Each participating business commits to achieving climate neutrality by 2040, a goal the Climate Pledge Arena is almost reaching in 2023.

How do they do it?

  • Built on the foundation of the old stadium, the new structure has undergone major changes. Gas lines were removed, and all energy shifted from fossil fuels to sustainable alternatives. Hydro energy was rejected by the strict certifying body - the International Living Future Institute. Wind and solar energy are now the primary sources that power light, sound, ice, heat, and all devices. Even the zambonis that clean the ice run on electricity.

  • Stadium operators advocate for zero food waste and the elimination of single-use plastic. Soft drink brands, like Pepsi, are actively involved in finding solutions. The aluminum cup is one way they've significantly reduced waste.

  • The Climate Pledge Arena also encourages public transportation by offering ticket subsidies. For the 20 to 25% of guests who use public transport, discounted tickets are provided. With approximately 200 events annually, including ice hockey, basketball, and live concerts, the Climate Pledge Arena is a bustling hub.

  • Calculating carbon dioxide emissions is a priority. The stadium aims to be the first with a 'full-scale carbon accounting system,' assessed by an independent body to confirm carbon neutrality.


Inside the sports arena, we're captivated by the American approach to a sports game. The introduction of the Seattle Kraken ice hockey team reminds us of nothing less than a U2 rock show or Beyoncé performance: complete with a spectacular light display, surround sound, and an epic video announcement of all team athletes. The home team is welcomed in style, and, in another stroke of good news, the Seattle Kraken clinch the win.

Special thanks to Doug Koob, Founder of Circle Alliances, and U.S Content Director for Food Inspiration