Staying ahead of the eco-curve

By Emily Kay 9 months ago

Initiatives such as the European Tour group’s Green Drive, the R&A’s Golf Course 2030 and the PGA Tour’s environmental stewardship evidence the growing importance of developing and implementing eco-friendly strategies to ensure a sustainable future for golf.

“Whether it’s at the supranational level or on an individual basis, we all have a role to play and a responsibility to fulfil when it comes to the environment and safeguarding its destiny,” said Ian Knox, Head of European Tour Destinations.

“World Environment Day reminds us how important it is to act – and not just pay lip service – to becoming more environmentally sustainable.

“This year, focus centred on the drive to Beat Plastic Pollution, which several venues in the European Tour Destinations network have been tackling head on for a few years now. Refillable water bottles have replaced hundreds of thousands of single-use plastic bottles, with water fountains supplying filtered, recycled water.

“This is only the tip of the iceberg though. Environmental measures and sustainable initiatives, such as reducing water consumption, eliminating single-use plastics and protecting natural flora and fauna, should be at the heart of any and all golf destinations long-term strategic goals and objectives in order to showcase their environmental credentials.”

Eco-friendly initiatives from within the European Tour Destinations network, include:

A natural sanctuary at Terre Blanche, France

The critically-acclaimed French resort has developed a natural sanctuary of 300 hectares where wildlife – including pheasants, ducks, geese, bees, turtles and fish – can prosper peacefully.

Zero-kilometre produce at Camiral Golf & Wellness, Spain

Growing natural produce on-site to use within its restaurants, sell at its shop and harvest by its residents is one initiative the Catalan resort has embraced in line with the zero-kilometre food movement.

A dedicated Sustainability Manager at Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

As a remote island resort in the Indian Ocean, the 5* luxury estate has a dedicated Sustainability Manager who is championing many of the destination’s initiatives, including the eradication of single-use plastics, in favour of refillable drinking water bottles.

Sustainability as a guiding principle at Costa Navarino, Greece

Sustainability is embedded in the development concept of Europe’s No.1 Golf Resort, not only as a fundamental design factor but also as a guiding principle that underpins all of its strategies. From the onset, 90% of the estate’s total land area has been dedicated to planted and natural greenery, which has included the replanting of more than 7,000 olive trees.

Striving for carbon neutrality at Emirates Golf Club, Dubai

Host of the Hero Dubai Desert Classic, the Middle Eastern resort has been working very closely with the DP World Tour on sustainability measures, not only implementing strong initiatives but also placing an emphasis on environmental education. This combined approach helped make this year’s event the most eco-friendly so far.

Ian Knox added: “The European Tour Destinations network comprises so many forward-thinking members who are keen to bolster their environmental credentials.

“The strength of the network means they can connect, work closely with each other and share best practice, as well as provide support and guidance to one another.

“They serve as notable benchmarks to the wider global golf world and we’re incredibly proud of the work that they’re doing.”

For more information on the measures being undertaken by destinations in the network, read our feature, “A sustainable future for golf”.

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