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DEM Salutes Golf Course Superintendents for their Commitment to Employing "Green" Environmental Practices

PROVIDENCE Today, in recognition of "Thank a Superintendent Day," the Department of Environmental Management (DEM) is saluting Rhode Island's green-certified golf courses and the RI Golf Course Superintendents Association (RIGCSA) for their commitment to employing "green" environmental practices.

"Kudos to Rhode Island golf course superintendents for their continuing efforts to employ sustainable practices and protect our state's magnificent natural resources," said DEM Director Janet Coit. "DEM is working to keep Rhode Island's land, air, and water resources healthy through integrated pest management, fertilizer reduction, and water and habitat conservation practices at Goddard Park's green-certified golf course and other state recreational facilities that we manage."

The Green Golf Course Certification Program, which began in 2010, is designed to improve environmental impacts at golf courses by effective management of water resources and responsible use of chemicals for fertilization and pest control, along with reduced energy consumption, solid waste, and air emissions. The program is jointly sponsored by DEM, the Coastal Resources Management Council, and RIGCSA. The three organizations are working together to reduce environmental impacts, and at the same time cutting operating expenses and increasing revenue.

From 2010-2016, golf courses voluntarily reduced their usage of fertilizers, pesticides, and water totaling the following reductions: 33lbs.of pesticides, 98,690 lbs. of fertilizers, 243,803,548 gallons of water, and 805 MTCO2e (Metric tons of CO2 equivalent greenhouse gases reduced). These reductions have resulted in over $634,000 in costs savings to golf course operations. Golf courses enrolled in the program continue to strive to voluntarily employ best management practices (BMP) at their courses and reduce their environmental impact.

Also, DEM is announcing revisions and updates to BMP requirements for the Green Golf Course Certification Program. In collaboration with all New England-based superintendents' associations, regional universities, and the New England Regional Turfgrass Foundation, DEM and RIGCSA are working to ensure the that the Green Golf Course Certification Program remains a model program in Pollution Prevention. The 2020 revisions to the BMPs will update prior initiatives while expanding opportunities for enhanced sustainable practices. In addition, the RIGCSA has facilitated studies on pollinator habitats on RI golf courses. They continue to promote pollinator-friendly environments and landscaping on golf courses through issuance of their newsletters. Several RI golf courses have added beehives to their courses.

For a complete listing of all the "Green" certified golf courses within the program, please visit the program webpage at: Green Golf Course Certification Program.

For more information on DEM programs and initiatives, visit Follow us on Facebook at or on Twitter (@RhodeIslandDEM) for timely updates.

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  • Department or agency: Department of Environmental Management
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  • Release date: 09-23-2020

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