Bold FEGGA Sustainability Statement Pulls No Punches

Bold FEGGA Sustainability Statement Pulls No Punches

Following leadership from The Federation of European Golf Greenkeeper Associations, greenkeepers all over Europe have come together in a pledge for responsible and sustainable golf course management. All of FEGGA‘s 22 European national greenkeeping organizations have agreed to promote and endorse a clear, detailed and ambitious strategic vision that embraces golf‘s potential to produce multiple benefits for nature and man. Included within this collaboration were representatives of the R&A and the GEO Foundation, and the result is the FEGGA Statement of Responsible Golf Course Management.

“To put this Statement into context, many ordinary people throughout Europe in the course of their everyday lives have major concerns relating to consumption of energy & resources, and the release of particulates and emissions,” says FEGGA board member Paul Worster, himself a Golf Course Manager. “We are all familiar with the terms climate change and global warming and every industry is required to deliver a clean and non-polluting service. However, very few regular golfers would have any concept of any standards within the Golf Industry to prepare a golf course for play, each and every day. The Statement sets these out and looks for ways to improve,” Worster adds.

According to FEGGA Board Chairman, Kamil Pecenka, the purpose of the FEGGA Statement is not to rigidly dictate to every greenkeeper how to do their job. Rather, the aim is to communicate the job that is done, and the solid reasoning and environmental principles behind it. The Statement is to give guidance and direction to the greenkeeping team, and is to be regarded as a tool with which to communicate with members, visitors and owners.

The FEGGA board aims is to translate the document into all the member Associations native languages, and with six completed 2 of which are available to view below, a real positive start has been made. This will certainly allow the document to reach more people, and for them to see the commitment FEGGA is making once again to Sustainable Golf Course Management.
Another build on to the document is to make it electronically interactive, providing links to simple but important information and guidance for greenkeepers and golf clubs to help them with their own journey of sustainable management. It then becomes a real resource within the FEGGA toolbox.

FEGGA Executive Officer Dean Cleaver says that FEGGA plans to continually build on this initial statement and include case studies from successful projects and working practices. “We will not pull any punches here. As well as inspiring our people to improve environmental performance, the package needs to be a sensible, useful, practical working guide as to how to make improvements, and how to answer questions and scrutiny from those who pay for the maintenance of our courses. In short, we need to be credible and convincing and the document needs to be exactly that.”
To name a couple of examples, he adds: “We automatically sort our domestic rubbish these days, so why would the golf club be any different? Why would the club not want to take the trouble? The document aims to identify the easiest ways to achieve this, and the ways to inspire your customers to want to be a part.

Drinking water supplies are not only coming under pressure, but drinking water carries a high amount of embedded energy, e.g. that energy which is required to pump it from source to a treatment plant, process it for human consumption, and then pipe it to the user. Why would we be literally splashing this crucial resource all over our golf course? The Statement prompts the direct need to secure some other supply such as groundwater. Will this cost a fortune, or will it actually save money? Speaking from a UK perspective, drinking water supplied via a water-meter can cost around one pound per cubic metre. Borehole water costs 2 pence for the same amount. Therefore the borehole installation pays for itself in a very short time.

Keeping it local and keeping it simple also saves money. Large companies learned this some time ago. Golf can pick up this example and run with it. The FEGGA statement covers all these points and more. We encourage greenkeepers and clubs to come on board with us to make this great game even better,” says FEGGA’s Paul Worster in conclusion.

Read FEGGA’s Statement of Responsible Golf Course Management here:

News0 comments

Leave a Reply

  • News digest