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Audubon Lifestyles has launched its Sustainable Golf Facility Program
Audubon Lifestyles, a non-profit sustainability focused education organization, has completed development of a program geared towards assisting those seeking to become models of sustainability at their golf facilities.
"Golf has an opportunity to position itself as a leader in the conservation movement for the free-enterprise system", stated R. Eric Dodson, President and CEO of the non-profit organization Audubon Lifestyles. He continued by saying, "But that will only happen if golfers support the ideas associated with golf facilities themselves being managed in more sustainable ways. If we want to see the game of golf continue to be an important part of the American landscape, golfers must show their support for sustainable golf facilities."
Through participation in the program, Audubon Lifestyles will assist golf facility managers, superintendents, staff, and others who desire to manage and operate their golf facilities sustainably. The program is geared toward assisting golf facilities seeking to become local, regional, national and international models of sustainability by incorporating sustainable principles, concepts, and management strategies.
Dodson noted that Audubon Lifestyles decided to develop and launch the Sustainable Golf Facility Program because the golf industry is at a crossroads.
"While much has been accomplished during the past two decades concerning golf course planning, design and management related to environmental quality, the golf industry, like everyone else, is currently gripped by economic uncertainty. In many regards, past unsustainable business practices have led us to the present state of the global economy. But in the face of this economically uncertain time, there is opportunity for the golf course industry to build upon our previous environmental improvements and become leaders in the more recent movement connected with sustainability."
Audubon Lifestyles has been working with the Sustainable Golf Advisory Council for the past several months to develop what they believe to be is the most comprehensive program of its type. Additionally, the Sustainable Golf Advisory Council has developed what it believes is the definitive definition of what a sustainable golf facility should aspire to be:
"A sustainable golf facility is an economically sound business that provides safe, healthy and enjoyable environments for all employees, members, visitors, and guests. A sustainable golf facility is sited, designed, and constructed in ways that enhance the local community and reduce or eliminate its impact on natural resources. It is managed in ways that provide balance between optimum playing conditions for golfers and good stewardship of the natural environment. Management strategies are based upon scientifically sound, site-specific best practices that improve the quality of all life on the site, region and beyond. Through outreach and education, a sustainable golf facility is a champion and advocate of sustainability."
While many factors drive economic conditions are beyond the scope of an individual golf course manager, those economic factors go hand-in-hand with environmental management opportunities that are available and accessible to course management. The relationship between economic, environmental and social concerns is not always intuitively obvious, but the three issues are nevertheless intimately connected.
To learn more about the Audubon Lifestyles Sustainable Golf Facility Program or to join as a pilot member visit: http://www.audubonlifestyles.org/
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Audubon Lifestyles is a non-profit organization based in the Principles for Sustainability, believing that the most natural way to foster sustainability is by working to balance the triple bottom line of people, profit, and planet. Operating with the main purpose of benefiting society, Audubon Lifestyles delivers sustainable programming, services and certifications that are cost effective and reduce risk.
Our goals include supporting the work of other not-for-profits involved in sustainability on local, regional, national and international scales. We believe that every person plays an important role in regard to the future of our planet. This includes roles at home, at work and in society at large. It is incumbent on each of us to make positive contributions toward the common good by being socially, environmentally and economically responsible where we live, work and recreate.