Audubon International recently announced that all the golf courses in the U.S. Army’s Program for Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation (U.S. Army MWR) will pursue environmental certification through the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP for Golf). The Army’s MWR Program maintains and operates 45 separate golf courses around the globe for enjoyment by golfers of all levels. U.S. Army golf courses are found throughout the U.S. (including Hawaii and Alaska) and overseas locations such as Japan, Korea, and Europe.
The enrollment of the U.S. Army MWR golf facilities in the Audubon International program demonstrates the Army’s continued pursuit of sustainability to enable its current and future missions, safeguard human health and the well-being of soldiers, families, and civilians, control costs, and protect the natural environment. The U.S. Army golf facilities function at high levels of participation, accommodating nearly two million rounds of golf each year.
“We are excited to work with the environmental organization Audubon International,” said Michael McCoy, Golf Program Manager for the U.S. Army, IMCOM, G9. “They help courses protect the natural assets that are part of the golf experience: nature, coastlines, rivers, grasses and trees.”
Audubon International works to protect and enhance the natural resources of properties and improve the environmental sustainability of each facility’s overall design and operations. In the ACSP for Golf program, each golf course will undergo a review process including environmental planning, wildlife and habitat management, chemical use reduction and safety, water conservation, and water quality management—with a goal of making voluntary improvements toward greater sustainability.
In addition, outreach and environmental education are required components of the program. This emphasis on community outreach and education in the ACSP for Golf program supports the U.S. Army MWR’s focus on increasing family participation, promoting accessibility, and growing the game of golf.
“The U.S. Army has really advanced their commitment to environmental concerns while also improving recreational and family programs,” said Doug Bechtel, Executive Director for Audubon International.
“We are so thankful that the Army is taking action to improve their environmental performance on golf courses. This commitment is perfectly aligned with other Army efforts to improve the environmental quality on lands they own and manage. As with all golf courses in this program, the Army can help demonstrate that environmental responsibility goes hand in hand with offering the highest level of playability and guest experience.”