Executive summary (English & local language)
In my 2013 executive summary for golf club Kleiburg I started as follows “Golf club Kleiburg recently started implementing sustainability issues in their business. The GEO-committee consists of highly enthusiastic and skilled members. They clearly demonstrated that 2012/2013 is just the beginning of their GEO-program, and that sustainability will be an integrated part of running a golf business”. Based on documentation and discussions during my visit, now three years later they have shown that sustainability issues are indeed an integral part of their management. All activities are well documented and archived in a proper way. Increasing biodiversity in and around the course is one of their key-issues. Energy and water use are now regularly checked and just last year new flow-meters were installed to get a better grip on their water use. Last but not least, the club has demonstrated an extravert attitude, with special attention to new media and contacts with other clubs in the region.
The last three years several holes were renovated at GC Kleiburg. Before the renovation started a list of endangered and rare species was made. All necessary measures to comply with the Dutch Flora and Fauna Act were documented by an external buro and implemented during the renovation. During my discussions with the responsible persons for the ecology of the course it became obvious that the club wants increase biodiversity the next coming years by extensively mowing grasslands around the playing areas and by introducing sheep grazing. Their latest full recording of the species diversity dates back to 2012/2013. To follow their efforts with respect to increasing biodiversity the coming years I suggest a new complete monitoring will be performed by 2017/2018. It was the club’s intention that greens would consists for 80% out of fine fescue grasses. This goal has not been achieved, however they managed to bring back the percentage of Poa annua of around 90% in 2009 to less than 40% in 2016. Now most greens have a relatively high percentage of bent grasses.
Several ago GC Kleiburg used the number of running hours of their pumps to estimate the annual irrigation rate. By that time annual consumption was estimated at 10.000 cubic meters. Now having installed flow-meters actual irrigation rates are higher than earlier estimated, but still highly acceptable for an eighteen holes course. By the end of 2016 an annual rate of 16.000 cubic meters was recorded. The club uses surface water from the “Brielse Meer” for their irrigation. Standard measures, like e.g. water-saving knobs are being used to minimize potable water usage.
Despite the installation of LED lightning and more attention is being paid to energy use, electricity use has gone up recent years. This is mainly due to the installation of lightning on the driving range. Furthermore, all laundry is now being washed by the organization themselves and for this a new commercial washing machine was purchased. Motion sensors have been installed and the club is now analyzing possibilities to install solar cells. Since 2015 the club uses “green electricity”. Furthermore new buggies have been bought that use only 50% energy of the old ones.
The restaurant serves eco-friendly produced coffee and locally produced meat from a nearby farmer. Recently, the restaurant switched from supplier and now foodstuff is being supplied in large recyclable packaging material. All waste on GC Kleiburg is separated according to legislation. With respect to fertilization, the club still uses around 150 kg N per ha per annum. No attempts have been made to further reduce their rate of fertilization, as they have proven with the present rate in combination with specific measures to reduce the amount of Poa annua in their greens considerably. GC Kleiburg does not use any fungicides and only herbicides when necessarely (spot-treament).
In the maintenance facility all chemicals are stored according to legislation. All products used by the greenkeep team are certified, and only minimum amounts of herbicides are used when necessary. The club does not use any fungicides. All machinery is washed on impervious floors and waste water runs via an oil/grease seperator before it is discharged to the main sewer. The oil tank was originally located at the site where the machinery is washed on impervious floors. However, due to specific regulation in this industrial area and ordained by the fire brigade the oil tank had to be replaced further away from the maintenance shed. The club should either discuss this once more with the fire brigade or take the necessary measures according to legislation.
Since 2016 GC Kleiburg works along a communication plan. In this plan targets are set with respect to internal and external exposure. Clearly they want to act as open club with respect to members and surrounding golf clubs. Deals have been made with other golf clubs such that members can play on each other’s courses at affordable prices. All handling of personnel, their rights and obligations have been extensively analyzed and described in their so-called “Risk Analysis and Evaluation” document. This document is open to members and all personnel.
- Action Plans and Project Proposals
- Awareness Raising Materials
- Certification Report
- Emergency Incident Plan
- Environmental Data
- Environmental Management Plan
- External Surveys and Reports
- Internal Reports
- Minutes of Meetings
GC Kleiburg demonstrated that sustainable management is part of their daily business and is willing to invest more energy to improve themselves. They now have archived most of their sustainable activities such that these can be used by future personnel and board members. I, Adrie van der Werf, recommend GC Kleiburg to be awarded with GEO sustainability certificate
A unique view of the busy port and industrial complex proving that sustainable golf can be possible and beneficial in all locations.
A skilled and enthusiastic sustainability team dedicated to improving the club environmentally and within their community. Although it is still developing and in the early planning stages, the OnCourse programme has unlocked some key ideas and helped put the club on a good path.