Below is first few paragraphs and a link to a complete article that appears in the popular business magazine, Fast Company. Given the ongoing discussion and debate about how our industry is portrayed by the media and in the public eye, and the efforts to improve this image, this article -- at least on its surface -- would appear that these efforts have fallen short of their intended goals.
Read the article and form your own opinions. What do you think? Share your thoughts with us. Email us at email@example.com or post your thoughts to Facebook and Twitter.
Fore! Water-Sucking, Pesticide-Covered Golf Courses Try To Clean Up Their Act
The links have been a frequent target of environmentalists, due to how much it takes to maintain them, often in places where manicured lawns aren't supposed to grow. But a new generation of courses is making major headway on the fairway.
Golf is a game that environmentalists love to hate--and not without reason.
The planet’s 31,000 courses take up land the size of Fiji (roughly 7181.5 square miles), and you can find plenty of stories of heinous water use (desert golf anyone?), dangerous use of pesticides (including the very noxious methyl bromide), and cases in the developing world where the poor have been expelled to make way for new developments.
In an age of fast-declining water supplies, the average U.S. course uses 312,000 gallons of water a day, or the equivalent of what a family of four gets through in four years (some courses use as many as one million gallons). And, many courses use huge quantities of chemicals, as they try to live up to an ideal of a bright-green, perfectly presented course. A mid-1990s estimate by the Neighborhood Network, a Long Island environmental group, found that U.S. courses used an annual 65 million pounds of dry bulk pesticides, and 2.9 million pounds of liquid pesticides.
What is more, many golfers don’t seem to agree on some basic environmental touchstones. A 2008 Golf Digest magazine survey found that 41 percent of golfers thought climate change was a myth, for example.
If the ire of environmentalists is well known, though, what is less appreciated is that the game has been cleaning up a little in recent years. While there are still many environmentally damaging courses, there are hundreds having zero--or even a positive--impact, and several influential programs that are cajoling owners and superintendents to manage their turf differently.
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