Getting Help (Part Four): The Groundwater Foundation’s Groundwater Guardian Green Sites Program

(Sustainability) Permanent link

10_22_15 ReservoirOver the coming months, I will focus on de-mystifying the various Voluntary Environmental Programs available to CMAA members. Each provides different features and value-added elements, and each can be a useful part of any club’s environmental management game plan.

The Groundwater Foundation was founded in 1985, and as its name suggests, has a mission focused on providing education to people to play a positive role in the protection of our groundwater supply.  So why care about groundwater?:

  • 95 percent of freshwater resources in the US come from groundwater
  • 50 percent of people get their drinking water from groundwater
  • Storage tanks, septic systems, chemical, road salts and other man-made source pose threats of contamination to groundwater systems
  • Nitrate contamination to groundwater, caused by chemical storage and use, usually approximate to well heads, is a real and potential public health danger and avoidable
  • Many of our groundwater aquifers across the country are dangerously low due to drought conditions and excessive use
  • Many people enjoy drinking clean, uncontaminated water, including your club members

Read more...

Getting Help (Part Three): GEO’s OnCourse® Program

(Sustainability) Permanent link

Over the coming months, I will focus on de-mystifying the various Voluntary Environmental Programs available to CMAA members. Each provides different features and value-added elements, and each can be a useful part of any club's environmental management game plan.

An organization that's gained traction and support in Europe in recent years, and has seen interest grow in the United States as well, is Golf Environment Organization (GEO). In the mid-2000s, current Chief Executive Jonathan Smith built on an early-version certification scheme known as "Committed to Green" looking to consolidate and support golf's sustainability agenda through voluntary environmental and social standards, guidance and certification. Since then, GEO has worked to take a more global position in promoting golf’s message as a sustainable sport. Read more...

Getting Help (Part Two) - Focusing on Birdies: The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program

(Sustainability) Permanent link

08_19_2015_175wOver the coming months, I will focus on de-mystifying the various Voluntary Environmental Programs available to CMAA members. Each provides different features and value-added elements, and each can be a valuable part of any club’s environmental management game plan. Read more...

The Benefits of a Systematic Approach to Environmental Management

(External and Governmental Influences, Sustainability) Permanent link

6_23_15_175wThis past winter I was asked to participate at a golf association chapter meeting discussing the value of third party environmental management programs in golf. After the joint session with Audubon International Executive Director Doug Bechtel and Golf Course Superintendents at Rockland Country Club in New York (Matt Ceplo, CGCS) and TPC Jasna Polana in New Jersey (Tim Connelly), a member of the audience approached me. Read more...

Best Practices for Private Club Membership and Marketing Sustainability

(Marketing, Sustainability) Permanent link

06_10_15_175wPrivate club membership and marketing has come a long way in the last ten years, however it’s amazing to see that a number of leadership teams remain hesitant to fully recognize the membership professional position and job responsibilities as a requirement for operational sustainability. Private clubs still prefer to hang their hats on the famous quote from The Field of Dreams, “If you build it they will come.” Read more...

Benefits of a Systematic Approach to Environmental Management

(Sustainability) Permanent link

05_12_15 Golf Course_175This past winter I was asked to participate at a golf association chapter meeting discussing the value of third party environmental management programs in golf. After the joint session with Audubon International Executive Director Doug Bechtel, and Golf Course Superintendents at Rockland Country Club in New York (Matt Ceplo, CGCS) and TPC Jasna Polana in New Jersey (Tim Connelly), a member of the audience approached me. During the session, I had spent some time talking about how Environmental Management Systems (specifically ISO 14001-compliant versions) have been successful in many other industries to manage environmental issues, and were starting to take off with golf businesses as well. (It's standard practice in countries like Australia, present in over thirty countries, and growing here in the US.) My eager listener said to me, "it would seem that we’re in the midst of an EMS revolution then?"  Read more...

The Death of Strategy and Other Myths

(Sustainability) Permanent link

4_14_15_175wI recently read two articles that got me thinking about the sustainability (economic and environmental) of the private club industry. The first, written by Forbes contributor Risk Smith, allured me with its title—“Is Strategy Dead?” As a professor of business strategy, the possible death of strategy certainly came as a surprise to me.  Read more...

SWOT’ing at Nature—Part Two

(Risk Management, Sustainability) Permanent link

3_19_15_175wBack in January, the first part of this article on developing an environmental strategy for your club made reference to survey data showing the gaps in performance and practice in this area. The patient (in this case the club and the club leadership) don’t even know they’re at risk. Like an undiagnosed heart condition, the only way the patient can identify risk factors is by visiting the doctor and going through an initial exam and perhaps some follow-up tests. Taking a few hours with the physician is worth avoiding a critical or catastrophic event down the road. Read more...

This information is provided for informational purposes only. The contents are presented with no warranty, either expressed or implied by the Club Managers Association of America. No legal responsibility is assumed for the outcome of decisions, commitments or obligations made on the basis of this information. If your club is faced with a question concerning legal issues, you should contact the club’s legal counsel for the specific application of the law to your situation.