The Rocky Mountain Golf Course Superintendents Association has released a Colorado Golf Industry Best Management Practices Guide. The guide promotes environmental stewardship, golf course playability, and the overall health of the Colorado golf industry through comprehensive best management practices covering 12 key areas.
The BMPs are divided into sections including surface water management, pollinator protection, water quality management, nutrient use, integrated pest management, energy and others. The primary function of the BMPs is to provide guidance for Rocky Mountain golf course superintendents and maintenance professionals.
“This is an important initiative for the RMGCSA, our 567 members are committed to operating at the highest of standards, with ongoing care for the environment,” said Lance Johnson, City of Westminster parks and golf manager and BMP steering committee co-chair. “Golf is a significant driver for recreation, fitness, and the economy within the state – this guide helps ensure our members are doing their part to support sustainability and collaboration within our communities.”
The RMGCSA is the second state chapter to integrate the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals throughout its guide. The SDGs, or Global Goals, are a universal call-to-action to end poverty, protect the planet, and promote peace and prosperity. Each section throughout the guide aligns with its respective SDGs to demonstrate local and global impacts.
“Golf courses, and the ecosystem services they provide, can be valuable contributors of natural capital for our communities,” said sustainability consulting firm Radius Sports Group President Gina Rizzi. “Services like surface water filtration, pollinator protection, open green space, wildlife habitats, and more – are all important, especially in urban environments.”
The Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, supported by the United States Golf Association and PGA TOUR, provided state chapters with a national BMP template and grant through the Environmental Institute for Golf to help develop guidelines specific to each state by 2020. The RMGCSA BMP steering committee comprised of superintendents and industry experts authored the book. Radius helped develop the guide and conduct a stakeholder review with industry leaders and officials from the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment, the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District, Colorado State University, Denver Water, Colorado Springs Utilities and others.
“Colorado golf maintenance professionals are dedicated to their practice, they work tirelessly to create the best playing conditions, while conserving important natural resources,” Johnson said. “BMPs provide a valuable resource for every Colorado superintendent and a great reference for all stakeholders.”