Scottish Open Steps up to Sustainability

Thursday 9 July 2015

European Tour Green Drive Local communities are set to benefit from the 2015 Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open, taking place in Gullane this week (9-12 July), following activation of the European Tour Green Drive sustainability initiative.

The European Tour Green Drive programme aims to enhance nature, conserve resources and support communities at events across the organisation’s annual schedule.

One of the flagship Green Drive initiatives planned for the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open is a re-use programme for local charities and community projects, managed by staging suppliers, Arena Group.

The re-use programme was first introduced by Arena Group and The European Tour at The 2014 Ryder Cup where 5,000m2 of materials from temporary structures were re-used by local groups who noted interest in receiving them.

Following the Scottish Open, items such as carpet, lino and AstroTurf will be donated to local charities and community groups. Beneficiaries already signed-up include a local primary school and community DIY groups.

Re-use is one of many sustainability initiatives embedded into the planning and delivery of the Scottish Open through The European Tour’s Green Drive. The programme, which is supported by GEO (Golf Environment Organization) - a North Berwick based not-for-profit working with the international golf industry - looks at all aspects of sustainably planning and delivering a major golf event from procurement, host venues, resources and site protection.

Fredrik Lindgren, Head of Corporate Responsibility at The European Tour said: “We are committed to hosting ever-more sustainable events and are delighted that local groups will benefit from re-using items after the Scottish Open has finished at Gullane Golf Club, which itself is making efforts in actively working towards achieving golfs global eco-label, GEO Certified®.

“Safeguarding the flora and fauna of the venue has been at the forefront throughout the planning of the tournament and sensitive areas have been identified and cordoned off for protection. Plans have also been made to maximise public transport use to the event with a free shuttle bus offered to spectators from nearby North Berwick train station.  Recycling bins will also be found across the site for staff, spectators and players.

“Through the Green Drive programme we will continue to work to reduce our waste and resource use at our events as well as enhance the value our events can bring to the host communities.”

Sustainability considerations have also been given to the food served throughout the event.  The Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open and main catering partners, Amadeus, have signed up to EventScotland’s Food Charter, which encourages locally produced, sustainably sourced food.

The Play Pod project at Law Primary School, North Berwick, is one of the schemes set to benefit from the re-use project. Kelly Clarke, a parent volunteer who helps to run the project said: “We are thrilled by the offer of donations from the Scottish Open to boost our project.

“Our Play Pod, is filled with reused and recycling items, mainly from local business. It allows children to enjoy truly inclusive, creative, ‘free-play’. Since we started the project we’ve had feedback from staff that it has improved productivity and engagement. There is also evidence suggesting that accidents are on the decrease due to their learning and it has also had significant impact on bullying.

“The amount of things we can use the donated items for are endless. AstroTurf can make areas that are inaccessible in wet weather become an area the children can use.  Fabric and carpet can also help to make dens and shelters. We find that their imagination exceeds ours and knows little boundaries.”

STRiVE Wellbeing is another local group set to benefit from the Green Drive re-use initiative. It will use donated items in community projects carried out by its Shed groups in Macmerry, Dunbar and North Berwick.

Alistair Sim, Development Worker at STRiVE Wellbeing, said: “We have been delighted by the generous offer of donated items for our Shed projects. The Sheds are social groups which work on individual and community focused projects incorporating DIY and upcycling with teaching and sharing skills. The groups have carried out many projects including building items for a nursery and church in Dunbar and planters for Macmerry village.

“We’ll soon be starting on building playground furniture for Ormiston Primary School, among many other things so the items donated from the Scottish Open will be a great benefit to our groups and all the community groups and projects that they support.”

Further information about The European Tour Green Drive can be found at www.europeantour.com.

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