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New Company Assisting Golf Courses Achieve Environmental Sustainability
With the urgency of environmental sustainability on top of most agendas, including that of the new presidential administration, consumers and industry are looking for ways to do their part to make the world a cleaner, better place for generations to come. Golf is in a unique position to immediately be a leader in this movement for change by becoming the first sport to create a self-sustaining funding mechanism for improving its environmental stewardship through a resource it already has in abundance: turfgrass.
The idea behind the project is simple: as an aggregator, Golfpreserves will package the sequestered carbon created by participating golf courses and sell the verified credits. Revenue generated from the sales will be routed into research projects that are vital for the future of the golf industry, focusing primarily on carbon sequestration, environmentally improved turfgrass as well as irrigation and pesticide usage.
"The Golfpreserves project is unique in the way that it can unite a sports industry and create the funding for its sustainable future. But collective action is needed - this is an opportunity for the whole industry to connect and actively do something for the environment," says Noble Hendrix, one of the two founders of Golfpreserves.
There are approximately 2 million acres of golf course land in the U.S. covered in turfgrass that sequester carbon at a rate exceeding any other urban land use. And while the science on turfgrass' sequestration properties in general, as well as the positive impact of managed irrigation and fertilization performed on golf courses in particular, is well established, the implications remain unexplored.
"In laymen's terms, our research shows that, in general, the turfgrass on golf courses create a net increase in carbon sequestration compared to the land from which they are created," explains Dr. Ronald F. Follett Research Leader for the ARS Soil-Plant-Nutrient Research Unit in Fort Collins, Colo.
According to a recent survey conducted by Golf Digest, 52 percent of golfers say that if golf courses were more environmentally-friendly, it would improve golf's image, in line with the 56 percent of the U.S. population that say the same.
"The opportunity for golf course owners to take action and invest in research that will further improve the environmental issues facing the industry is going to be a huge advantage moving forward. And it will certainly be welcomed by all those who love the sport," says William Crispin, co-founder of Golfpreserves.
The Golfpreserves project is now open to participation for the owners of the country's golf courses. For more information, visit www.golfpreserves.com.
Golfpreserves is a carbon sequestration program for the golf course industry. As an aggregator, Golfpreserves will facilitate the assessment, quantification and confirmation and create carbon financial instruments (CFI) that will be traded on the carbon market. The proceeds from sold carbon credits are invested into research focusing on carbon sequestration, environmentally improved turfgrass, irrigation and pesticide usage.