The Sustainable Golf Project Benchmark Tool Launched
The Sustainable Golf Project Benchmark Tool Launched The Sustainable Golf Project Benchmark Tool Launched
Publ. date 12 Sep 2012
Sustainability in the global golf sector is something that can no longer be ignored. Partly due to increasing stakeholder pressures from sponsors, golfers and local communities, golf courses and golf events are starting to embrace environmental and social issues. Sustainability is becoming an important driver for the reputation of courses and tournaments alike. The benefits are evident: It helps to attract more sponsors, as a way to increase the efficient use of natural resources and as a tool to accelerate innovation.

Sustainable golf is on the rise

Finch & Beak recently investigated the value of a sustainable golf course for golfers. From more than 300 consumers, 96% indicated that they would like their regular golf course to become more sustainable. The most important material issues on sustainability for golfers were: reducing water usage, recycling and reduction of waste, chemical pest control, and protecting biodiversity. The most important drivers to play golf are experiencing nature, fun, and relaxation. Regarding the own contributions of golfers to a more sustainable game of golf, 52% of the golfers would like to compensate the emissions of a round of golf and 31% would like to contribute through for instance course maintenance. The study clearly indicates that golfers would like to contribute towards a more sustainable game of golf.

The Sustainable Golf Project: benchmarking golf courses on sustainability

In order to help golf courses and golf events to become more sustainable, Finch & Beak initiated the Sustainable Golf Project in 2010. The First step in this project was the benchmarking of professional golf events on sustainability with the Sustainable Golf Index. On 18th September, during the KPMG Golf Business Forum in Tuscany, Finch & Beak will announce the results of the 2012 research for golf events on the European Tour.

An obvious next step is the benchmarking of golf courses on a global scale. Therefore Finch & Beak will also launch their new website of the Sustainable Golf Project at the Golf Business Forum,. The site helps golf courses and golf events to become more sustainable. Through benchmarking, golf courses and golf events can compare themselves with others in the sector and learn from best practices. With these insights, golf courses and golf events are able to realize quick wins on sustainability. A sustainable golf course operates more cost-efficiently and attracts more golfers. The Sustainable Golf Project is a global project with golf courses from approximately 25 different countries in its database.

Methodology behind the Sustainable Golf Project

The Benchmark approach of the Sustainable Golf Project combines the ISO 26000 framework with the people, planet, profit approach as used by several  prestigious benchmarks such as the Dow Jones Sustainability Index. Each domain consists of key indicators such as:


Company Size
Turf Maintenance
Local Community Involvement
Waste Management
Human Capital Development
Health and Safety
Strategic Planning
Natural resources
Stakeholder Engagement
Customer Issues
Energy Management
Code of Conduct
Water Stewardship
Check out the benchmark tool at For more information on Clan Membership, please contact Jan van der Kaaij, managing partner, at or  call+31 76 5222817.


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