Date: Mon 12 Jun 2017

Spotlight on... Preventing Groundwater Contamination

This is one of the major concerns when considering the environmental impact of golf courses.

Photo courtesy of Rain Bird

Photo courtesy of Rain Bird

There are primarily two aspects to this: preventing the contamination of pesticides from run-off from the course, and preventing the run-off from washing machinery entering groundwater.

The EU Directive 2006/118/EC deals with preventing and combatting groundwater pollution in the European Union (EU), and includes procedures for assessing the chemical status of groundwater and measures to reduce levels of pollutants – http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?qid=1496827219008&uri=CELEX:32006L0118. You can read a summary of it here – http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/TXT/?uri=cellar:f41f5a96-0ceb-40ed-8cc8-dc08e195ca82.

In the UK this is enshrined in law in The Groundwater (England and Wales) Regulations 2009 – http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2009/2902/contents/made, and for Northern Ireland – http://www.legislation.gov.uk/nisr/2016/119/contents/made.

There is Guidance from the Environment Agency – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/protect-groundwater-and-prevent-groundwater-pollution/protect-groundwater-and-prevent-groundwater-pollution#contents and a handy diagram to help you assess when groundwater is vulnerable to pollution – https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/602590/Groundwater-vulnerability.pdf.

We have several books in the Library that deal with this subject, notably:

  • Sustainable Golf Courses, by Ronald Dodson
  • The Environmental Stewardship Toolkit, by Anthony L Williams and
  • Golf Course Management & Construction: Environmental Issues, by James C Balogh and William J Walker

These are all available for loan.

An online search for a recent enquirer turned up several interesting research reports:

Advice on wash-down requirements are often discussed in the greenkeeping press, for example – Greenkeeper International – http://www.bigga.org.uk/about-us/magazine/back-issues/05-2012/washdown-arerequirements/01156.html and GMé (formerly Golf Management Europe) in August 2015 which you can download here:

A Clear way to save water, money and the environment

Download PDF:
A Clear way to save water, money and the environment

Golf Course Design
Sustainability