Blairgowrie Golf Club (Getty Images)
Blairgowrie Golf Club, host venue of the 2014 Junior Ryder Cup, has been recognised for its contribution to the environment and community by achieving GEO Certified™ status, the international mark of sustainability in golf.
Celebrating 125 years, the club and its three courses are steeped in history, located in a stunning landscape on the edge of the Perthshire market town.
To become GEO Certified™, the club demonstrated their commitment and value across diverse sustainability topics, including nature; water; energy; supply chain; pollution control; and community.
Richard Hills, Ryder Cup Director said: “Congratulations to all those involved who work so hard to run the club and courses. Blairgowrie Golf Club is a tremendous local asset – bringing valuable income and investment to the town; providing healthy recreation to people of all ages and also conserving a landscape rich in wildlife. This is another major contribution to the Ryder Cup Green Drive.”
Hamish Grey, Chief Executive of the Scottish Golf Union added: “This achievement highlights the kind of social and environmental contribution made by many golf clubs across Scotland. Blairgowrie have received environmental advice and support from our subsidiary organisation the Scottish Golf Environment Group (SGEG). We hope other clubs will follow their lead by utilising this free service and the free OnCourse™ programme and become more prominent by achieving golf’s ecolabel.”
Douglas Cleeton, Managing Secretary of the Blairgowrie Golf Club said: “We are delighted to have achieved this great accolade, which is testament to the conscious approach taken by our staff and committee members. Our golfers also gain immense pride and enjoyment from the courses and surrounding landscape, and this process has helped us identify further positive actions we can take in the future.”
Highlights of Blairgowrie’s sustainability work include:
• 36% reduction in electricity consumption at the maintenance facility.
• 7% overall reduction in non-renewable grid electricity over 3 years.
• Sustainable woodland management plan written by SGEG in 2011, being implemented under guidance of experienced club member.
• 1 tonne of on-site forest thinnings used as a renewable fuel source each year.
• Wide ranging and valuable partnership work within the local community, including educational activities
• Increasing the number of solar powered golf carts
• 10 beehives introduced
• Red squirrel traffic warning sign project
• Course management blog communicating unique wildlife stories http://blairgowriegreenkeeper.blogspot.co.uk.
• Heather, fine grasslands, gorse and Scot’s pine forest provide important habitats for a wide range of plants and animals, a number of which are locally and nationally rare.
Find out more at:
About Ryder Cup Green Drive
The Ryder Cup Green Drive is a multi-partner initiative, led by Ryder Cup Europe and supported by the Scottish Government, aiming to integrate sustainability across all aspects of one of the world’s most visible sporting events. A comprehensive agenda of social and environmental issues is being addressed across venue management; temporary staging; outreach and legacy; and communications. To find out more go to: http://www.golfenvironment.org/ryder_cup_2014_greendrive
GEO is a stakeholder funded, not-for-profit organization dedicated to helping the golf community worldwide demonstrate leadership in sustainability. GEO Certified™ is golf's international assurance for environmental enhancement and community contribution, recognising commitment, performance and continual improvement.