For nearly 25 years, the Ryder Cup Green Drive has been showcasing sustainability and climate action in sport.
Initially launched with support from the European Commission at Valderrama in 1997, the Ryder Cup Green Drive has expanded in scope and reach at each European edition of the event with sustainability central to maximizing a ‘net positive impact’ impact of the event – both directly and in the local community, and indirectly through wider reach and influence.
An ongoing commitment
Commitments and initiatives over many years have built understanding, capacity and enthusiasm and addressed many of the priority issues of our time – from tackling climate change, carbon reduction, protection of biodiversity and promotion of nature, ethical supply chains, resource efficiencies, lasting legacies and providing inspirational leadership.
Actions encompass all areas of the event from golf course and venue maintenance, spectator transport, waste management, energy efficiency, water usage, procurement, materials, and sustainable food sourcing.
For more than two decades, the Ryder Cup Committee has demonstrated interest in and concern for the health of the environment, recognizing the unavoidable impacts that the event brings and working continuously to minimize that impact and maximize the positive sustainability opportunities the Ryder Cup generates.
Taking the Green Drive to new levels
The 2010 Ryder Cup at Celtic Manor made significant progress and set a benchmark for the delivery of an increasingly sustainable tournament.
In 2014, Ryder Cup Europe took the Green Drive to new levels, in direct partnership with the Scottish Government, Scottish Golf Union, and other agencies. The programme drilled down into all aspects of procurement, leading to a zero-waste event, generating legacy funds and publicity for the John Muir Trust which facilitates young people gaining education and conservation work in Scotland’s wildest landscapes, and also with an outreach project supporting biodiversity actions on 19 other golf courses close to Gleneagles.
Home to over 350 species of biodiversity as identified by the National Natural History Museum of France, the international greenkeeping team at Le Golf National cut the greens with twenty fully electric Jacobsen mowers. In addition, a new Toro irrigation system helped cut overall water use by 40% in three years and Le Golf National’s drive on recycling meant over 340 tonnes of waste is reused and recycled every year.
The 2018 Green Drive was adapted to deliver on the French Government’s 15 criteria for ‘eco-durable’ events. Local food, products and services were prioritized; a significant biodiversity regeneration programme was planned for Le Golf National in collaboration with the French Natural History Museum, and a major communications initiative targeted spectator awareness while they were on site.
Looking towards 2023, all stakeholders are seeking to achieve even more across venue; transportation; energy; water; circular use of materials; carbon reduction and mitigation; legacy projects; and fan engagement.
Find out more on The Ryder Cup website