The Iowa Events Center, managed by Global Spectrum, is located in Des Moines, IA and consists of several facilities including Wells Fargo Arena, Hy-Vee Hall and Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center. Throughout the year the Events Center is host to many different types of events including home games for the Iowa Barnstormers (Arena Football League) and Iowa Energy (NBA – D League Basketball), concerts, conventions, conferences, meetings, wrestling meets, dance tournaments and much more.

Since 2009, Global Spectrum has taken steps toward implementing several green initiatives throughout the Iowa Event Center. A team of employees from the operation and engineering departments work together to develop and implement cost-saving initiatives into their daily operations, with a majority of the savings coming from energy costs. By reducing its energy use in heating/cooling and lighting systems, the Iowa Events Center has been able to save a significant amount of money on energy costs.

So how exactly do they incorporate these initiatives? Let’s take a closer look:

  • Recycling: Global Spectrum and Ovations Food Services staffs currently recycles cardboard, paper, aluminum, plastic, and glass throughout the facility, including in the suites and concourses in Wells Fargo Arena. Recycling also takes place in the offices and back of house spaces as well as throughout Hy-Vee Hall and Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center at Veterans Memorial. In addition, all applicable light fixtures, metals, electronics, batteries, motor oils and landscape waste are also recycled. This past year, Ovations catering and kitchen staff incorporated an organic composting program in partnership with GreenRU*! The partnership allows for food scraps and other waste from the on-site kitchens to be diverted from the landfills and made into a nutrient-rich, soil-like compound to be used for landscapes in the community.
  • Cleaning: The Iowa Events Center maintenance staff incorporates green cleaning with the use of approved environmentally friendly chemicals, including Alpha HP, a universal cleaner for windows, counter tops and similar surfaces.
  • Lights: The team replaced 216 mercury halide lights in Hy-Vee Hall with fluorescent light fixtures. Light sensors were placed into several areas in the facility to increase lighting as natural light diminishes throughout the day. Also, motion sensors in the restrooms, lobby and other areas regularly used throughout the day turn lights off and only turn them on when someone enters into the space. Chief Engineer Al Hayes** continues the savings in lighting by upgrading several fixtures in elevators, catwalks and aisles to light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs. To further save on lighting costs, if there is an event in one facility and not in the other ones, the areas not in use go black to help offset the use of extra lighting in the event space.

Moving forward, green efforts will continue at the Iowa Events Center with the possibility of adding plasma lights, electric car charging stations, solar panels, water reduction and any other areas they see that need improvement and that meet environmentally friendly standards. Watch for more updates as the Iowa Events Center continues to be more green!


*GreenRU is a “zero waste” recycler of organics and food scraps headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa. They offer complete recycling services and can provide carts and/or bins, training, signage, and a complete selection of compostable dinnerware, trash liners, and flatware. Their products are all ASTM D6400 certified and are 100% biodegradable and compostable.

**Global Spectrum’s Al Hayes, Chief Engineer at the Iowa Events Center, is an active member in the Iowa Renewable Energy Association, Iowa Association for Energy Efficiency, and Center on Sustainable Communities.