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How Much Energy Does a Football Stadium Use?

As you might imagine, football stadiums consume an enormous amount of energy. Modern sports venues require the use of electricity on an industrial scale due to the extensive wattages consumed by lighting systems, video screens, speakers, retractable roof mechanisms, interior appliances, air conditioning & heating systems, maintenance & communication equipment, and countless other electrical components that need to be powered during the course of a match. With so much energy consumption happening in one place, it’s easy to see why you might be wondering how much the electricity bill for a stadium costs. This quick guide will give you a general idea of how much energy a typical football stadium requires in terms of watts used and pounds spent:

Costs Vary Depending on Stadium Design and Electricity Source

Some stadiums have massive arrays of solar panels which collect a large portion of the required energy, while others rely entirely on electricity generated by a local utility provider. The features of a stadium will determine its peak energy consumption. For example, a stadium with a retractable roof and gigantic video screen is going to consume significantly more energy than an open-roof stadium with a smaller screen. The exact amount that a stadium pays per megawatt of energy will depend on their electricity provider. Many football stadiums and other large venues use comparison platforms like Utility Bidder to find the most cost-effective commercial energy quotes. Utility Bidder also has an in-depth overview on stadium electricity needs here: https://www.utilitybidder.co.uk/. 

Hourly and Yearly Cost Examples

To give you a more literal example of how much a football stadium might pay for electricity, a stadium with about 75,000 seats will rack up a bill of about a half a million pounds during the course of a single season. Some of the largest stadiums that have electricity bills on the higher end of the spectrum can pay up to a million pounds or more just for annual energy costs. State-of-the-art stadiums with retractable roofs and fully enclosed, air conditioned environments, can consume up to 750 megawatts continually during a match. At about 30 pounds per megawatt per hour, that works out to more than £20,000 per hour in electricity costs. 

Ways Football Stadiums are Reducing Energy Usage

Many stadiums have started installing extensive solar panel & wind turbine setups and switching to more energy-efficient lighting and HVAC systems to save money or eliminate electricity bills altogether. Some of the largest stadiums can have as many as 10,000 solar panels or more.  In fact, some stadiums are now producing much more power than they actually use, creating a situation in which the venue owner is actually generating a profit by routing energy back into the grid and being paid for the surplus by a utility company. 

The Future of Stadium Energy Consumption

With many places making a push to require solar panels on all new residential construction, it’s only a matter of time before that trend takes hold in the commercial and industrial sectors and becomes the new standard for all sports venues.