While Autumn marks the end of the marquee events for the year, it is my favorite part of the golf calendar. The weather turns crisp and clear, the insect population dwindles and even though the days are shorter, the weather is perfect for golf. Living in the Northeast U.S., I always look forward to the fall golf season. The lack of heat and humidity creates ideal conditions for grass and courses are often in their best shape of the year between September and mid-November. The leaves will put on their annual fireworks show and even the deer, foxes and other wildlife seem to be savoring the mild days before winter storms in.
Golf uniquely provides a compelling activity with the opportunity to commune with nature. Traditionally, golf courses have gotten a terrible reputation as polluters and poor stewards of natural resources. A big part of the National Golf Day efforts over the last fourteen years has been to get legislators and the general public informed about the huge strides that have been made in the areas of conservation, water usage, and protection of the environment.
The green movement in golf has come a long way, but it will take a big leap forward next week as the first ever Sustainable Golf Week will be taking place starting October 3. Organized by the GEO Foundation for Sustainable Golf, Sustainable Golf Week will give partners and collaborators globally the opportunity to reflect, celebrate and accelerate industry efforts to build a greener future for the game.
Sustainable Golf Week will spotlight golf’s achievements in sustainability and celebrate the eco-friendly actions of many golf courses, developers, designers, tournaments, players and companies that deliver on the UN Sustainable Development Goals. And under its #DrivingTheGreen theme across several mainstream and social media initiatives, Sustainable Golf Week will champion the work of leaders across the golf industry with inspirational examples and ideas on the practical steps that everyone involved in the sport can make to move the green agenda forward.
“Sustainable Golf Week provides an opportunity for people across the sport to connect around a common purpose – to make sure that golf becomes established as a credible global leader in sustainability and climate action,” said Jonathan Smith, Executive Director of the international non-profit GEO Foundation for Sustainable Golf. “It is about helping to bring some stronger collective focus to the issues, as well as building ever greater energy and momentum to golf’s contribution. We are excited about the ways in which this week can go on to be an ever-stronger catalyst for more action and visibility for golf and sustainability around the world.”
Some of the most influential and forward-thinking organizations in the industry are partners and supporters, including the R&A, Ryder Cup Europe, LPGA, The Toro Company, Dow, Motocaddy, and some 50 industry federations and associations across 25 countries. And the effort has reach beyond golf with its alliance with the UN Sport for Climate Action, The Gold Standard and ISEAL Alliance.
Contrary to conventional wisdom, golf course owners and operators are among the best stewards of the environment and natural resources to be found in their communities. With all of the other things that compete for their attention, many operators don’t have the time to promote the good work that they are doing. Sustainable Golf Week could provide an effective means to show off the good work of the past and team up with great partners to do even more in the future. To find out more about Sustainable Golf Week and GEO Foundation and how to get involved visit: www.sustainable.golf/sustainablegolfweek or follow @sustainablegolf on social media. See you outside!