Earth Day Celebration with Intuit Dome

This Earth Day we are reminded of the importance of creating a more sustainable and environmentally friendly community and each of us doing our part to help the planet. In addition to achieving LEED Platinum certification, Intuit Dome will be 100% carbon-free from opening day. The arena is also committed to monitoring annual greenhouse gas emissions and transportation impacts.

This month we are highlighting Mersy Maradiaga a Sustainability Engineer for Turner Construction and one of our valuable team members that helps Intuit Dome be more “Green”.

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you got started in your career?

Mersy Maradiaga: I was born in Honduras and came to this country at age 13. I grew up in Los Angeles and went to school at UC Irvine where I studied civil engineering. I always had a passion for the environment, especially for water. Growing up in another country where water is a precious resource that is so limited, then you come to a new country where water is available at a turn of a tap was a complete culture shock. I knew I somehow wanted to protect that resource in the career I chose.  I attended a conference when I was in school and met someone who worked at Turner Construction. That person also shared the same passion for the environment and water. I researched the company and realized I had to work there.

What is your current role at Intuit Dome?

M.M:  I started working for Turner in 2017 and am currently a TRUE Zero Waste Advisor and LEED Green Associate. I am mainly focused on LEED certification specifically on waste that comes in to the site and what goes out of it.

How would you best describe sustainability?

M.M: To think outside the box in caring for our environment. We are so used to thinking of our supply chain in a linear form when it should be more like a circle. We extract everything from nature, create the items and then at the end we throw it away and it ends up in the landfill. We need to change our mindset to create a second life for the materials that are created to keep the circle going and repurpose items instead of creating new ones. In other countries resources are limited so they have to be creative with re-using items not just for the cost but also to help the environment and generations to come.

What innovative sustainability initiatives set Intuit Dome apart as a leader in eco-conscious sports and entertainment venues?

M.M: One of the things I am the most proud of is that 60% of the concrete used on site was installed using a technology called carbon cure, which consists of injecting recycled carbon dioxide in the concrete instead of using higher amounts of cement. Cement is made of pure limestone which is a natural resource and substituting it is a big way of reducing our embodied carbon. Currently we are at 87% in diversion rate and we have been able to achieve that by recycling 100% of the drywall, metal and scrap carpet.

We send it back to the manufacturer and they are able to re-use it instead of it going to a landfill or a recycling plant. Instead of using small plastic containers for certain materials we use a bigger container that can be refilled by the manufacturer to generate zero waste. We have been able to save 2 tons which equals about 4,000 pounds of plastic from these processes. The idea is to have this go beyond Intuit Dome and have it be the industry standard that inspires others to do the right thing for our planet.

Can you share some tips for the community to be more “green”?

M.M: You can start by making sure to use a reusable water bottle instead of the one-use plastic bottles that end up in the trash. We can also be mindful of our daily habits and make changes like eliminating plastic shampoo bottles by purchasing bar shampoos instead. There are also alternatives to plastic tooth brushes that are made from bamboo. Also, while you are brushing your teeth make sure to not leave the water running to save water. We can also take our reusable bags to the store instead of using the plastic bags that pollute our communities and ocean. We can all be proactive with small changes to help our planet every day.

Thank you Mersy for helping us celebrate Earth Day and to you and your team for helping to make Intuit Dome more sustainable for today, tomorrow and the future.

Subscribe with your email and/or phone number to receive information about work opportunities and construction updates. Standard messaging rates apply.