Protect & Enhance

As large areas of semi-natural land, comprising mosaics of natural vegetation and undulating topography, all golf courses can actually enhance water quality by supporting the function of watershed processes.

Wetland restoration at GEO Certified™ MirimichiWith carefully targeted investment in people and infrastructure, golf management activities that could potentially degrade water quality can be carried out safely, supported by systems for treatment and disposal that meet statutory requirements.
Given the direct links between land management inputs, drainage, biological diversity and safe drinking water, golf's role in the protection and enhancement of water quality should be a top priority for all facility managers and course designers.

Above: Wetland restoration has been carried out at GEO Certified® Mirimichi .

Golf courses can act as watersheds themselves, and should also function within larger natural watersheds. A comprehensive and integrated approach is required to ensure all aspects of water protection and enhancement are covered, including:

  • Do all you can to minimize fertilizer and pesticide inputs to land management.
  • Design sustainable drainage systems that treat water naturally via swales, ditches, streams, ponds and wetlands - all of which help to strip out nutrients, oils and pesticide residues.
  • Store, handle, apply and dispose of all hazardous substances with care and in legal compliance.
  • Train staff and invest in appropriate technologies for treating wastewater.

On the Ground...

Belas Clube de Campo, Portugal

Broken Sound Club, USA
GEO Certified™ Belas Clube de Campo GEO Certified™ Broken Sound Club
The design of Belas Clube de Campo ensures that all course runoff is collected into lakes before being re-used for irrigation, rendering any negative impacts on water quality virtually impossible. Further actions such as collecting rainwater from building roofs for use in the wash pad system safeguards pollution control while minimizing consumption. To reduce the volume of treated waste water being dumped onto the reefs off the coast of Boca Raton, Broken Sound Club made a deal to take reclaimed water from the city (via a new 13.2 million dollar line) and filter it through the golf courses, thus helping to reduce the 6 million gallons a day being dumped into Atlantic Ocean, a 'win - win' scenario.