Zuid Limburgse Golf En Countryclub 'Wittem'

GEO Certified® 06/2012 GEO Re-Certified 08/2015
Gulpen Wittem,
Netherlands
Telephone: +3143-4552370
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The Gulpen-Wittem municipality is home to the highest golf course of the Netherlands; situated on a plateau surrounded by old hillside forests (Schweibergerbosch and Kruisbosch). With its 50 ha, the course is quite compact, but still includes 29 ha of natural reserve. The Zuid-Limburgse Golf & Country Club began as a 9-hole course (Hawtree, 1954) and was later expanded into an 18-hole course with practice facilities (Rolin, 1991). Several renovations have been performed since 2004 (Steensels). 2013 saw the start of a large-scale renovation…

Paul van Kan, GEOSA, Accredited Verifier Read verifier report.

GEO Certified® Report

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Click below to read about the activities undertaken by this golf facility to operate sustainably.

Facility details

Golf Courses
Wittem (18 holes, 5904 metres, year opened 1956)
1 Clubhouse(s)
1 Maintenance Facility/Facilities
1 Practice Facility/Facilities

Nature

The course is situated in the hills of South Limburg, the only part in The Netherland where hills can be found. The original 9 holes, that were laid out by Fred Hawtree in 1956, are on a plateau covered with dense forest. In 1991 the course was extended to 18 holes by Belgian architect Paul Rolin on an open and more contoured piece of land. From these holes, players have a free view over the South Limburg countryside.

The Zuid Limburg Golf & Country Club 'Wittem' can be described as a woodland and open parkland course.

The course is surrounded on three sides by conservation areas with a high environmental protection status (Natura 2000).

Ambition
Our ambition is to blend the golf course seamless in the surrounding countryside.This is worked out in detail in the attached report "De Zuid Limburgse bos- en landschapsbaan". The bulk of the plan will be implemented between 2013 and 2018.

Targets:
- Concept development plan (done)
- Agree with authorities (done)
- Develop detailed plans (completed)
- Apply for permits for total plan (done and permit received)
- Phase 1 thru phase 3 implemented (2013, 2014 and 2015)
- Remaining phases to be executed in 2015-2018
- Enhancing native woodlands (by StaatsBosbeheer, 2015-2017)

Consultation & Surveys

This golf facility consults the following organizations regarding landscape heritage conservation:

  • Staatsbosbeheer (National Forest Conservation Board)
  • Instandhouding Kleine Landschapselementen in Limburg (IKL)
  • Province of Limburg
  • Municipality of Gulpen-Wittem
  • IVN Limburg

The following landscape assessments and surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
De Zuidlimburgse bos- en landschapsbaan; gebiedsvisie golfbaan ZLGCC Heukelom Verbeek 2011/09/08 Download

This golf facility consults the following organizations regarding ecosystem protection and enhancement:

  • Staatsbosbeheer
  • IKL
  • Province of Limburg
  • Municipality of Gulpen-Wittem
  • Vogelbescherming Nederland
  • IVN Limburg

The following ecological surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
De Zuidlimburgse bos- en landschapsbaan; gebiedsvisie golfbaan ZLGCC Heukelom Verbeek 2011/09/08

Rare, protected and notable species occurring at this golf facility:

Local name Scientific name
Hazelmuis Muscardinus avellanaruis
Gewone/Grijze grootoorvleermuis Plecotus auritus/austriacus
Koekoek Cuculus conarus
Grauwe klauwier Lanius collurio
Groene specht Picus viridis
Vroedmeesterpad Alytes obstreticans
Kamsalamander Triturus cristatus
Vinpootsalamander Triturus helveticus
Kleine parelmoervlinder Issoria lathonia
Sleedoornpage Thecla betulea
Christoffelkruid Actaea spicata
Grote leeuwenklauw Aphanes arvensis
Rapunzelklokje Campanula rapunculus
Voorjaarszegge Carex caryophyllea
Bleke zegge Carex pallescens
Grote centaurie Cantaurea scabiosa
Borstelkrans Clinopodium vulgare
Muurhavikskruid Hieracium murorum
Gevlekt hertshooi Hypericum maculatum
Fraai hertshooi Hypericum pulchrum
Grote keverorchis Neottia ovata
Eenbes Paris quadrifolia
Ruige weegbree Plantago media
Aardbeiganzerik Potentilla sterilis
Bochtige klaver Trifolium medium
Tepelsatijnzwam Entoloma papillatum
Zwartsneesatijnzwam Entoloma serrulatum
Kale knoflooktaailing Marasmius scorodonius
Vorkplaatrussula Russula heterophylea

This golf facility regularly monitors the following species as indicators of environmental quality:

Local name Scientific name
All of the above listed species are on the so called 'Rode Lijst' and as such are monitored on a regular basis. This is done by members and by professional biologists active in the vicinity of our club.

Habitats & Designations

This golf facility features the following landscape designations:

Description Designating Authority
Historic Landscapes / Parklands Province of Limburg
Areas of Scenic Beauty Municipality of Gulpen-Wittem
National Park State of The Netherlands, European Union

Area of habitats / vegetation types, and associated designations at this golf facility:

Title Estimated Area (Hectares) Designation
Rough 'ecological' grassland 9 Self Appointed
Scrub Vegetation 5 Self Appointed
Native Woodland 5 National Government
Non Native Plantation Woodland 8 National Government
Wetlands 0.5 Informal NGO
Open Water Features 1.0 Informal NGO
Heather and other dwarf shrub communities 0.5 Self Appointed

Turfgrass

Size and estimated species composition of amenity turfgrass maintained at this golf facility.

Estimated Area (Hectares) Turfgrass Species Sward Composition (%)
Greens 2.0 Hectares Poa annua 80%
Agrostis tenuis / capillaris 20%
Tees 1.0 Hectares Poa annua 90%
Lolium perenne 10%
Fairways 15.0 Hectares Poa annua 80%
Poa pratensis 20%
Semi Rough 3.0 Hectares Poa annua 80%
Poa pratensis 20%

These turfgrasses are optimal for the circumstances at this club because:
Poa annua is the dominant turfgrass in The Netherlands as it is in most other countries in our part of the world. In the past years the decision has been taken not to fight this turf, but to use it in the best possible way. Overseeding greens with Agrostis and Festuca to limit the negative effects of monoculture is part of our maintenance program.

This golf facility assesses mowing patterns every: 6 months

This golf facility consults the following individuals / organizations regarding its grassing plan:

  • Hawtree Limited
  • George Shiels (MaCmillan-Shiels Associates)

This golf facility is making the following efforts to manage the playing quality expectations of customers:

Activity Description
Establishing clear internal policies for irrigation, fertilization, colour, cutting heights, overseeding etc These policies are laid down in a longterm Course Management Plan (Baanbeheerplan) and in annual maintenance programs.
In general, we aim at having our golf course as fast and firm as possible. Therefor irrigation and fertilization are kept to a minimum. Colour of grass is not regarded as criterium for the health and attractiveness of the course.
Promoting the playing quality values of more naturalized turf, particularly fairways and semi-rough The feeling that the grass should be as green and lush as possible ('Augusta National Syndrome') has been left by our club quite a while ago. Members and guests are used to the the fact that fairways and rough can become dry and brownish during dry periods. Our course never has had fairway irrigation.
Promoting the financial benefits of presenting sustainable surfaces In recent years and as part of the above mentioned long term plans, the scale of sustainable surfaces has increased considerably. Members are aware that besides the ecological and esthetical benefits, there sustainable surfaces have financial benefits as well.
Improving customer understanding around greens maintenance Internet and e-mail are used to inform members and guests about maintenance of greens. During bi-Annual General Meetings, members are informed by the Greens Committee on the status of the course, including maintenance.
Demonstrating the direct relationship between environmental best practice and year round high quality playing surfaces In the above mentioned and attached course development plan "De Zuidlimburgse bos- en landschapsbaan' the relationship between environmental best practice and year round playing quality is described in a detailed manner.

Conservation & Enhancement

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to conserve landscape character:

Activity Description
Allowing seasonal variation of course coloration and texture Only tees and greens have irrigation systems. The rest of the course, including fairways and rough areas are kept as natural as possible. They change in color and texture in accordance with the time of year.
Appropriately matching mowing lines to contours Very little earthwork was done during construction of the course. Holes follow the existing contours of the landscape. Mowing lines are used to accentuate these contours.
Protection and restoration of historic features Continuous efforts are made to fit the course as seamless as possible into the South Limburg landscape. This includes the introduction and conservation of features that are characteristic for this landscape.
Discreet on-course signage and furniture Signs and course furniture are kept to a minimum.
Conservation of specimen trees The possibilities of giving the course the character of an arboretum are researched.
Screening and softening unsightly man-made features The clubhouse, driving range hut, carts shed, fences and the greenkeepers maintenance shed are surrounded by trees and scrubs.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to improve the landscape ecology of the golf course:

Activity Description
Minimizing the amount of amenity grass With the exception of tees and greens, we have native grass species on the golf course. The dominant ones are varieties of poa and fescue.
Increasing the size of habitat patches Water features will be added to the course, with special attention for amphibians and reptiles (especially Alytes Obstreticans and Triturus Cristatus)
More hard rough is created (was/is semi rough)

Planting of new trees and scrub on the parkland part of the course is part of the course development program.
Connection of internal habitat patches The above mentioned water features will have the character of 'stepping stones'.

Planting of new trees end scrub on the parkland part of the course will lead to a more natural connection with the woodland parts of the course.
Connection of patches with external habitats The water features will be connected to similar external habitats

Softer en more natural overflows between the golf course and the surrounding landscape will be established in the years to come.
Creation of habitat corridors 'Bosrandbeheer' in cooperation with SBB
Avoidance of habitat fragmentation The course is build on one single plot of land and is completely open to the surrounding landscape. There are no boundaries. There is no risk of habitat fragmentation
Improving and diversifying habitat edges 'Bosrandbeheer', hard rough

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to improve the quality of habitats on the golf course:

Activity Description
Creation of botanically rich rough grassland This is an integral part of the course development program (see the attached report 'De Zuidlimburgse bos- en landschapsbaan'). During the past three years areas with this kind of grassland have been expanded considerably.
Ecologically informed management of scrub vegetation This is an integral part of the course development program (see the attached report 'De Zuidlimburgse bos- en landschapsbaan'). Scrub vegetation will be introduced on several parts of the golf course, aiming at creating the best possible habitat for butterflies and 'hazelmuis' (muscardinus avellanaruis).
Promoting species and structurally diverse woodlands This is an integral part of the course development program (see the above report 'De Zuidlimburgse bos- en landschapsbaan').

A Tree Management Plan is set up to replace conifer trees by various native species.
Establishment of littoral shelves and marginal vegetation in wetland areas This is done in accordance with guidelines we received from IKL (a local ecological organization). The same will be done with wetland, ponds and other water features that are planned to be created in the years to come.
Maintenance of an appropriate balance of open water and aquatic vegetation IKL, a non governmental ecologic organisation specialized in this field, is consulted to do this.
Naturalization of linear habitats On the course, free flowing forms are used as architectural features. These natural forms are used on all natural parts of the course too.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to conserve and enhance biodiversity on the golf course:

Activity Description
Provision of nesting and nectar for pollinators Bosrandbeheer, hard rough
Installation of nest boxes A plan to install nest boxes is in preparation.
Provision of feeding tables Feeding tables are used for birds during winter time. Feeding other animals is unwanted and in some cases even prohibited.
Control / management of alien species There is no need to control or manage alien species at our course. The only alien species on the course are gold fish that have been put in ponds by members. These fish will be removed gradually (and/or eaten by herons).
Provision of hibernation areas Piles of leaves in forest areas and muddy parts of water features are designated as hibernation areas.
Creation of micro-habitats (eg log and stone piles) This is done as part of the creation of water features.

Water

The clubhouse and maintenance facility are connected to the public water supply.

For the irrigation of greens and tees three water basins are available on the golf course. Approx. 40% of the course is drained into these basins. The main basin is refilled in summer time with potable water whenever necessary. Fairways and (semi)rough are not irrigated.
Since 2010 the irrigation system is computerized and the water usage is measured.

As part of the renovation program, one additional water storage basin has been added in 2013 and one more is planned. Drainage of additional areas (renovated greens and teeboxes) of the golf course will be connected to these basins. The total water storage capacity should be sufficient to cover all the irrigation requirements and we envisage that supply of public water would be kept to a minimum.

Sources & Consumption

The following water audits have been undertaken at this golf facility:

Title Author Date View document
Watersysteem ZLGCC 2011 Heukelom Verbeek 2011/10/25 Download

The water used at this golf facility is drawn from the following sources:

2014 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 1,000,000 Litres
Golf Course Reclaimed 66% 4,300,000 Litres
Public / Potable 34%
Maintenance Facility/Facilities Public / Potable 100% 100,000 Litres
Other Public / Potable 0 Litres
2013 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 1,000,000 Litres
Golf Course Reclaimed 67% 5,300,000 Litres
Public / Potable 33%
Maintenance Facility/Facilities Public / Potable 100% 100,000 Litres
Other Public / Potable 0 Litres
2012 Source(s) % of supply Total Consumption
Clubhouse(s) Public / Potable 100% 1,000,000 Litres
Golf Course Reclaimed 99% 5,500,000 Litres
Public / Potable 1%
Maintenance Facility/Facilities Public / Potable 100% 100,000 Litres
Other Public / Potable 0 Litres

Irrigation & Efficiency

The following areas receive irrigation at this golf facility:

Greens Daily in season
Tees Daily in season
Fairways Never

The irrigation system at this golf facility is:
Semi-automatic

The irrigation system at this golf facility is:

Serviced every 1 years

Upgraded every 5 years

Re-calibrated and checked for efficient application every 1 years

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to maximize irrigation efficiency:

Activity Description
Selection of grass species Greens: 50/50 allbent/fescue
Teeboxes: 70/30 fescue/ryegrass
Soil decompaction and thatch management Frequent aeration of greens and tees is executed to keep thatch levels under control. Program is adjusted once/year.
Timing and dose of water application Manually, preferably in the early morning
Analysis of soil moisture Only visual
Incorporation of evapotranspiration rates and weather data None, timing and quantities of irrigation is set manually (daily)
Use of wetting agents Wetting agents are applied on greens and teeboxes; frequency is every 4 to 6 weeks
Overall reduction in irrigated area We only irrigate greens and tees. Fairways and (semi) rough are not irrigated at all.
Targeting of sprinkler heads With the renovation of the greens independent nozzle heads (4/green) are installed.
Optimizing system pressure The system is kept under pressure by a jockey pump. Pressure is set by Smits BV, our irrigation contractor.
Adoption of cutting edge nozzle technology We use state of the art technology (Rainbird), as per advice of Smits BV, our irrigation contractor.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to conserve / reduce / minimize water consumption:

Activity Description
Low-flow urinals and toilets Installed
Use of water efficient appliances Not installed
Use of efficient shower technology Not installed
Repairing leaks Leaks are repaired immediately
Water awareness signage Not present

Energy

We are using electricity from the grid for lighting and charging batteries (carts), natural gas from the grid for heating and cooking, and gasoil and petrol as fuel for maintenance equipment and vehicles.
Early 2015 an energy audit has been carried out. The outcome has to discussed; an action plan is not yet developed.

Sources & Consumption

No energy surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility.

Consumption of renewable energy and resources at this golf facility:

2014 2013 2012
Renewable Grid Electricity (kWh) 2000 2000 2000

Consumption of non-renewable energy and resources at this golf facility:

2014 2013 2012
Coal 0 0 0
Diesel (Litres) 11000 11000 11000
Heating Oil (Litres) 0 0 0
Natural Gas (Litres) 27600 26100 26400
Non-renewable Grid (kWh) 108000 98000 94000
Petrol (Litres) 800 800 800

Energy Efficiency

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to diversify energy and fuel supply:

Activity Description
Adoption of green tariff grid supply According to the current contract we are using 'grey' electricity.
Installation of small scale wind turbine n.a.
Installation of photovoltaic and / or solar panels n.a.
Use of geothermal and / or ground sources n.a.
Use of Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) n.a.
Use of biodiesel and /or ethanol n.a.
Use of electric hybrid vehicles n.a.
Use of recycled oils n.a.

This golf facility is undertaking the following activities to reduce energy consumption:

Activity Description
Investment in low-energy heating and air conditioning systems We do not have any airco system running.
Replacement of the heating system by a high efficiency boiler is under investigation
Optimizing thermostat levels for heating and refrigeration n.a.
Enhancement of natural ventilation opportunities n.a.
Upgrading of building insulation The outcome of the energy audit has to be discussed and a decision to improve the building insulation has to be taken
Use of natural light (e.g. sunlight pipes) n.a.
Installation of low-energy lighting In 2010 the electric bulbs have been replaced by low-energy bulbs wherever possible
Use of motion sensor lighting In 2010 motion sensor lighting has been installed in toilets and changing rooms
Transition to energy efficient appliances n.a.
Use of timers with appliances, heating and lighting n.a.
Educating staff and customers No action yet

Vehicles & Transport

The maintenance fleet at this golf facility uses the following fuel sources:

Ride-on Mowers Walking Mowers Utility Vehicles
Petrol 100%
Diesel 100% 100%

Additional vehicles operated by this golf facility use the following fuel sources:

Golf Carts Cars Buses
Grid Electric 100%

This golf facility has established the following schemes to encourage reductions in staff and customer transport emissions:

Activity Description
Car sharing incentives n.a.
Group transportation (e.g. buses) n.a.
Secure cycle parking n.a.
Promoting public transport routes and timetables n.a.
Increasing equipment storage (e.g. lockers) We have sufficient storage capacity
Staff showers n.a.
Tax breaking incentives for cycling n.a.
Promotion of walk to work campaigns n.a.

Supply Chain

We do not have an own staff for maintaining the course. The work is contracted out as follows:
• Green keeping (SBA, local contractor, 5 year contract).
Day to day work, on basis of a fixed price for manpower (4,5 FTE/year) and machinery. Cost plus for materials and fuels. Most materials are obtained from local suppliers. Special maintenance like aeration, vertidraining etc is carried out on basis of unit rates
• Irrigation system (Smits, local contractor)
Once per year check and calibration, breakdown maintenance. Reimbursable contract.
• Tree maintenance (v.d. Linden, Rouwette, local contractors)
Once per year about two weeks in winter time, reimbursable contract.
• Cutting of hedges (Flamand, local contractor)
Twice per year, fixed price.
• Pond and lake maintenance (IKL, local contractor)
Once per year inspection of all lakes and ponds; required maintenance on basis of fixed price.
The clubhouse (bar and restaurant) are leased by a caterer.
Maintenance on electrical carts is done by a local contractor (Jean Heybroek), who is also the supplier of the carts.

The renovation project, replacement of 9 green complexes, replacement/upgrade of about 40 teeboxes, upgrade of green surrounds and fairways, addition of water storage capacity, started in 2013 and will be completed in 2018.
The renovation has been awarded to SBA following a competitive bidding procedure. Irrigation is handled by Smits (unit rates) and the planting of trres and shrubs is done by v.d. Linden (unit rates as well).

Use of pesticides and fertilizers is restricted to the minimum.

Purchasing Policies

This golf facility undertakes the following ethical / environmental purchasing activities:

Activity Description
Measures to avoid waste at source The golfclub has a declaration of intent for a sustainable and ethical purchasing policy
Use of local suppliers Only local suppliers are used for maintenance and catering
Use of local products Our maintenace and catering contractor buy for 90 to 95 % with local suppliers
Selection of certified products We use only approved products on our golf course.
- grass seeds
- fertilizers and pesticides
- materials for pathways
- oil and fuels
- sand
Use of recycled and recyclable products Course furniture: wood FSC certified
Recycled plastic sign posts
Selection of products that feature minimal packaging Fertilizers and pesticides are purchased on an annual basis and stored inside (shed).
Fuels for maintenance equipment are stored outside according to legal requirements. Any spillings are collected.
Use of accredited suppliers (e.g. ISO 14001) Our main maintenance contractor is ISO 14001 certified

Supply Chain

An overview of the supplier network at this golf facility:

Total number of suppliers Total number of suppliers within 10 Kilometres Total number of suppliers within 100 Kilometres
Food & Beverage 5 4 1
Catering Supplies
Retail
Trade & Contractors 6 2 4
Maintenance Equipment
Course Supplies 4 4

Turfgrass Inputs

This golf facility undertakes the following IPM activities:

Activity Description
Encouraging drought and disease tolerant grasses We are overseeding greens with Colonial Bent and Fescue.
Managing stress and wear Stress areas are earmarked by blue poles and considered as GUR
Enhancement of soil structure Tining and sanding of fairways are carried out once/year.
Greens are aerated in the growing season every 6 weeks. If necessary top dressing will be applied.
Optimization of the growing environment The use of fertilizers and pesticides is monitored.
Fertilizers and pesticides are not used in (semi) rough areas or near water ponds.
Areas of hard rough and around water pools are developed as habitats for fauna.
Managing thatch levels Hollow tining, scarification, sanding of greens
Managing surface moisture Surface moisture of greens is frequently removed in the mornings.
Occasionnaly wetting agents are added, freq. 1x/4-6 weeks
Establishing thresholds for pests and disease Greens are frequently monitored for the presence of disease.
If present, sometimes mould (fungus), appropriate action will be taken.
Scouting for pests and diseases Monitoring by greenkeepers on a daily basis
Monitoring / improvement of plant health Yearly survey by an specialized agronomist

Fertilizer use at this golf facility in the last three years (kg):

2014 2013 2012
Fairways - K - Inorganic 48 45 54
Fairways - N - Inorganic 34 32 38
Fairways - P - Inorganic 7 7 8
Greens - K - Inorganic 234 212 279
Greens - N - Inorganic 157 143 186
Greens - P - Inorganic 79 73 90
Semi-Rough - K - Inorganic 48 45 54
Semi-Rough - N - Inorganic 34 32 38
Semi-Rough - P - Inorganic 7 7 8
Tees - K - Inorganic 124 106 159
Tees - N - Inorganic 93 80 120
Tees - P - Inorganic 40 34 51

Pesticide use at this golf facility in the last three years (kg):

2014 2013 2012
Fairways - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 2.4 1.3 2.1
Fairways - Herbicide - Total Weight 107 59 87
Fairways - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Greens - Fungicide - Active Ingredient 5.3 1.2 6.4
Greens - Fungicide - Total Weight 26 6.5 31.5
Greens - Fungicide - Number of applications per year 3 3 3
Greens - Insecticide - Active Ingredient 0.15 0.15 0.15
Greens - Insecticide - Total Weight 30 30 30
Greens - Insecticide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1
Tees - Herbicide - Active Ingredient 2.4 1.3 2.1
Tees - Herbicide - Total Weight 4 2 3
Tees - Herbicide - Number of applications per year 1 1 1

This golf facility undertakes the following actions to optimize pesticide use:

Activity Description
Selection on the least toxic and lest persistent products yes, based on specialized advice
Selection of appropriate products for specific pests and diseases yes, based on specialized advice
Spot-treatment with handheld sprayers and wipers yes, when appropriate
Calibration and testing of sprayers Once a year
Use of shrouded sprayer and anti-drip nozzles yes
Non-chemical weed control yes, hand spiked on the greens
Use of organic and biological products to improve plant health and resistance. n.a.
all quantities shown are kg/year

Waste Management

No waste audits have been undertaken at this golf facility.

This golf facility manages key waste streams as follows:

Re-use Recycle Landfill Incinerate
Glass false true false false
Plastic false false false true
Aluminium false true false false
Metal false true false false
Paper & Cardboard false true false false
Grass Clippings false false true false
Cores & Turf false false true false
Sand true false false false
Wood / Timber false true false false

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to continue the lifecycle of materials and resources:

Activity Description
Separation of recyclable materials yes, especially near the clubhouse (separate bins)
Establishment of recycling centers yes, outside the kitchen area
Returning clipping to fairways and walkways yes, clippings are left on the fairways and semi rough
Education of staff and customer education Maintenance staff trained by main contractor
Waste awareness campaigns Regular discussions with contractors

Pollution Control

Ambition
Our ambition is to strictly adhere to the existing rules and regulations concerning the Natura 2000 area.
Furthermore we want to investigate if recycling can be increased.

Targets
- investigate whether compost on site is feasible with regard to permits and hindrance (2013)
- investigate where we can further segregate waste (2012)

The golf course is located near a so called Natura 2000 area. These areas are the most protected woodland areas in the Netherlands (by law). We have to ensure that the activities on the golf course do not effect the Natura 2000 area.
This is stipulated in our permit and is regularly checked by the authorities.

Our maintenance contractor is ISO 9001 and VCA certified. All quality, safety, health and environmental issues are adressed in his 'VGMK plan' written and approved for our golf course. His personnel is instructed regularly. In our weekly meetings with the contractor, safety and environmetal issues are standard agenda items.

With regard to waste management: we strictly adhere to the local laws and regulations which are the most stringent in the European Region. Waste is collected segregated by the municipal waste contractor; paper, glass, plastic, tin, organic materials and others. Hazardous materials are collected seprately.
We plan to investigate how to further reduce the categorie 'others'.

Water Analysis

This golf facility monitors water quality with the following frequency:

Chemical Biological Visual
Inflow Never Never Never
On-Site Never Never Yearly
Outflow Never Never Never

Waste Water

Waste water from this golf facility is managed as follows:

Discharges to Formal Discharge Agreement
Golf Course Detention Pond N/A
Clubhouse Mains Sewer Yes
Maintenance Facility Mains Sewer Yes
Wash Pad Mains Sewer Yes

Hazardous Materials

Hazardous materials at this golf facility are handled and disposed of as follows:

Secure Storage Registered Uplift
Detergents true false
Cooking Oils true false
Lubricants true false
Pesticide Containers true true
Fertiliser Bags true true
Oil Filters true false
Batteries true false

Pollution Prevention

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to prevent pollution from its maintenance facility and clubhouse:

Activity Description
Storage of equipment and hazardous products on covered, sealed impervious areas Storage of equipment and most hazardoes products in enclosed sheds.
Oil and fuel drums storted outside in enclosed areas above a concrete floor, all according to legal regulations.
Maintenance of equipment on covered, sealed impervious areas yes, only small maintenance is carried out at our site; overhauls etc are done outside at the premisses of our main contractor.
Mixing of pesticides and fertilizers in covered areas Mixing is done inside maintenance shed if necessary.
Most pesticides and fertilizers are ready to use.
Mixing of pesticides and fertilizers over impervious surfaces All storage and mixing (if necessary) is done on concrete floors.
Installation of above-ground fuel tanks bins with concrete walls and floors are used to store (a limited amount of) fuel
Installation of sufficient secondary containment for fuel yes
Provision of containment booms and absorbent materials absorbent materials are available to handle small spills

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to prevent pollution on its golf course:

Activity Description
Eliminating leachate and run-off through careful timing of turf inputs Use of fertilizer is kept at a minimum by monitoring grass quality and is not used in wet periods. Waterbuffers and ponds are designed in such a way that no overflow can take place to Natura 2000 areas.
Establishment of vegetative buffer strips around water bodies At least a 1 meter zone around waterbuffers is kept pesticide and fertilizer free.
Establishment of emergency spillage response plan Is part of main contractor's VGMK plan.
Controlling erosion and sediment discharge Uncovered soil, if present, is covered.
Drainage traps are inspected annually and cleared when necessary.
Roads and pathways are maintained once a year.
Establishment of pesticide-free zones (Deep) rough and wooded areas are not treated with pesticides and/or fertilizers.
Our aim is to create natral habitats for fauna.
Use of swales and bio-filters to slow and treat surface run-off N.a.

Community

It is our ambition to continue good relations with authorities and local community. We have regular meeting with local politicians and civil servants to discuss ongoing business. The course is partly open to the public and accordingly plays a role in the local leisure industry.

Targets
- organize yearly open day for neighbours
- invite members of local community to inform and discuss our upgrading plan (2012)
- issue press relases to inform local media on new developments
- conduct regular meetings (at least twivce/year) with authorities (municipality and staatsbosbeheer) to inform and discuss progress of our maintenace and upgrading plans
- have a yearly evaluation meeting with authorities

Club creates jobs for apprx 11 people

Employment & Education

Typical staffing levels at this golf facility are:

Full Time Part Time Seasonal
Club Management 1
Course Management 4 1 1
Food & Beverage 3 2 2
Golf Coaching 1 1

The sustainability working group at this golf facility is comprised of:

  • Committee Members

Employees at this golf facility receive the following formal and informal environmental education:

Activity Description
Storage, application and disposal of pesticides Mimimum use of chemicals and special attention to avoid used chemicals to get in contact with surrounding environment. Rules and guidelines are explained and discussed with employees during work and staff meetings.
Efficient water management Not fully realised yet. Plan to create an internal closed waterbalance is ready and will be executed with the start of the course remodelling
Management of accidents and emergencies Our maintenance contractor is officially certified in this field (VCA). Training and education of employees is part of this certificate.
Management of habitats and vegetation Surrounded by Natura 2000 area. High sensitivity from all staff and committees to control and respect rules and regulations
Waste minimization, separation and recycling Waste separation is executed on all office and substantial household waste, chemical waste and green waste. Employees and committee members are aware of relevant rules and the ways these have to be applied.
Health & Safety This is part of the above mentioned VCA certificate of our contractor responsible for course construction and course maintenance.
Energy Saving Minimizing energy use is discussed on a regular basis with our contractor and with employees working in food & beverages.
Understanding of landscape and cultural heritage Our contractor and his employees (greenkeepers) are fully aware of the specifics of the landscape and cultural heritage of the golf course and its surroundings. They live in the close vicinity of the course.
Environmental management planning The clubs policies and action plans in the field of environmental management are shared with our contractor and his employees.

Community Relations

This golf facility engages with local community groups in the following manner:

Activity Description
Neighbours Once a year neighbor day.
Co-operation in winter road cleaning.
Open door policy: neighbors are encouraged to get in touch with the club in case of questions, remarks and/or requests.
Local Government Intense communication on legal and ownership issues community and landowner (Staatsbosbeheer). Regular meetings with relevant civil servants and local politicians.
Local Environmental Groups Contact with 'Stichting Dassenwerkgroep Limburg' on natural habitat and about plans to improve and upgrade the course.
Local Community Groups There is one such group relevant to the golf course ('Stichting Verontruste Bewoners'). They are invited on the annual neighbor day.
Media Press releases are issued when relevant. Journalists from local media know who to approach in case of questions (Club Secretary).
Local Businesses There are regular contacts with hotels and other businesses active in the leisure industry.
Schools & Colleges Promoting golf for children via school ( College) sport system.

Land Use & Cultural Heritage

This golf facility provides access and diversified land use for others through:

Activity Description
Maintenance of existing public paths Paths used for walking/hiking on mainly older part of the course.
Creation of new paths and nature trails The site on which the course is situated doesn't allow creation of new paths and trails.
Installation of effective and welcoming signage These signs are at the entranceway to the golf club, in front of the clubhouse and at some of the public roads leading to the golf club.
Providing opportunities for other recreation (e.g. fishing) This is not possible and/or not allowed.
Partnership conservation and access projects (e.g. community woodland) The club has established an important and fruitful partnership with the National Forest Trust (Staatsbosbeheer). In recent years, new trees have been planted as part of the 'Nationale Boomfeestdag'.
Continuation of traditional agricultural activities A typical South Limburg apple tree orchard was planted at the golf course in 2014.

No archaeological or heritage surveys have been undertaken at this golf facility.

This golf facility does not consult any organizations regarding the conservation of cultural heritage.

This golf facility undertakes the following activities to conserve cultural heritage features:

Activity Description
Buildings (Listed Buildings / Ancient Monuments etc) The clubhouse is not officially listed, but it is almost 60 years old and is seen as authentic and precious part of the Golf Club. For that reason it is cherished and maintained with high care.
Archaeology (Settlements / Agricultural System etc) The attached report 'De Zuid Limburgse bos- en landschapsbaan' contains a chapter on archaeology. The chance that settlements of historical value can be found on the golf course is considered to be low.
Historic Features (Hedgerows / Dykes / Moats / Cairns etc) A large part of the course is surrounded by hedges that are typical for South Limburg. They are maintained with extra care and the club is investigating opportunities to receive governmental subsidies to cover the costs.

Communications

This golf facility undertakes the following internal environmental communications:

Activity Description
Provision of newsletters, notice boards & poster display Environmental issues are communicated on a regular basis on the website, both on the open and on the members part. If topical, these issues are communicated also via the news bulletin that is sent to all members on a weekly basis.
Members evenings and course walks Environment and sustainability have become fixed items on the bi-annual General Members Meetings.
Course walks are organized on a regular basis for bird watching.
Course guides / brochures All guests receive a course guide for free when they play the course. A brochure is available for everybody who wants to get general information on the club and on the golf course. Both publications contain concise information on the golf course and its specifics.
Interpretation panels & course signage There is a beautiful and unique interpretation panel between the 15th and 16th hole, giving information on the exact location of the course and its position relative to major landmarks in the surrounding landscape.
Course signage is kept to a minimum to avoid disturbing and interfering objects.
Establishment of a nature trail There is no such trail at the moment and it is not foreseen in the near future.

This golf facility undertakes the following social and environmental advocacy activities:

Activity Description
Website, press releases & brochures The attached document 'De Zuid Limburgse bos- en landschapsbaan' serves as a pamflet to give all stake holders an impression of the ambitions and aims of our golf club and to show how a golf course, nature conservation and landscape development can go hand-in-hand. Elements of the document are communicated via the website and brochures as well.
Supporting campaigns The club takes part in several programs that are initiated by the Dutch Golf Federation (NGF). Committed to Green and Committed to Birds are two examples.
Course walks / open days Once per year neighbour day.
Attending community meetings Close to the golf course, a refugee center has been opened. The club has taken the initiative to get in contact with the center to exchange information. Members have been invited to visit the center.
Joint practical projects with community The club has acted as host several times during Second World War remembrance ceremonies that are being held annually on sites close to the golf course.