As golfers, we are regularly spoilt by lush, rolling fairways and immaculate, true running greens. However, with climate change and other environmental issues causing damage to our fragile planet, golf has been taking great steps to ensure it is playing its part in going green. So exactly how is golf going green?
Golf has come under criticism from environmentalists, who are concerned about the practices of keeping golf courses in great condition. However, golf courses around the world have been implementing water saving irrigation systems, which cut down the amount of water being used to maintain golf courses, significantly. Many golf courses in hua hin in Thailand have also stopped using chemical and pesticides and have become pesticide-free venues. There is even a golf course in California, which is using grease from its restaurant, to help power maintenance equipment. Drought tolerant and salt water resistant grasses are also being used on golf courses, which limits the damage done to them by the weather and nature, meaning less chemicals are being used to restore them.
Golf carts are another aspect of playing golf, which has come under question. However, with the introduction of golf cart solar panels, this is starting to change. The panels attach to the top of the golf cart, which reduces the need to keep having the battery recharged. This is very popular among Vietnam golf courses.
It’s not just the golf courses themselves which have been working hard to make golf more green, there have also been great strides made with golf equipment. You can now purchase golf tees, which are made from recyclable plastic and people are also making tees from corn starch, meaning they will leave no trace, if left behind.
How often do you buy new golf balls? Millions of golf balls are lost every year but that doesn’t mean they are not being found. Many golf courses will now look for lost balls, clean them up and sell them in the shop. So next time you want some new balls, why not recycle some which have been lost on the course? Biodegradable golf balls are also available, which are great for practice, especially when you know you want be able to collect them.
Finally, there is golf attire and this also has an impact on the environment. Companies are now producing golf attire which is made from 100% organic materials, including polos, trousers, shorts and hats.
Golf is making a great effort to improve its impact on the environment and will continue to make strides to become greener.