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Olympics
The Twenty Ten Course at The Celtic Manor Resort.

Golf in focus at Olympic Conference

The green credentials of The 2010 Ryder Cup come into focus.

Golf's green credentials, and more specifically those of The 2010 Ryder Cup, will be the focal point of the eighth World Conference on Sport and the Environment (WCSE) in Vancouver, Canada, from March 29-31, 2009.

A bi-annual fixture in the Olympic calendar, the WCSE is organised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) in partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP).

It is now firmly established as the premier forum for organisers of major sporting events to come together with corporate and environmental leaders to share knowledge and advance practices related to sport and its relationship with communities and the environment.

Golf's leading international environmental partner, and the body overseeing the planning and delivery of The Ryder Cup programme, the Golf Environment Organisation (GEO), has been working with UNEP for more than a decade.

This ongoing relationship will return to the spotlight again in Vancouver as GEO is called upon to deliver insight into the widely-regarded efforts of the golf industry in addressing environmental issues and driving improved performance.

Theodore Oben, Chief of Sport and the Environment UNEP, is delighted to see GEO join a premier list of speakers including His Serene Highness Prince Albert of Monaco, Masato Mizuno, Chairman of the Mizuno corporation, and Frankie Fredericks, Chair of the IOC Athletes Commission.

He said: "UNEP trust and value the objective and scientific insight that GEO provides on golf, and their vision and drive towards a sustainable future for the sport. Yet again, we're delighted to have golf communicating its increasingly strong leadership to the prestigious audience which will assemble in Vancouver.

"Following GEO's contribution to the Global Forum for Sport and Environment (G-ForSE) last year in Alicante, we are delighted that they will once again shed light on the issues and opportunities which perhaps uniquely rest with golf.

GEO's Director of Communications Benjamin Warren will present some key elements of the sustainability strategy that is unfolding in golf, which has been developed through collaboration with the game?s governing bodies and associations, and key environmental stakeholders.

This will feature specific programmes and campaigns centring on golf facility development, facility management and the staging of golf events.

The focus on The 2010 Ryder Cup will give delegates insight into the partnership behind the action plan, the scope of issues covered, how policy has been established across key staging topics, and ultimately how this is being turned into tangible achievements.

Key targets include significantly reducing the number of people in cars; moving towards a zero waste event; procurement of Fairtrade and local products, materials and services; use of low carbon vehicles for transportation; and the protection and enhancement of the site ecology, landscape and significant cultural heritage interests.

As the environmental action plan for the event moves into the hugely important 'procurement' phase, GEO looks forward to comparing Ryder Cup efforts with initiatives in other sectors and at other events.

Mr Warren said: "In particular, we are keen to learn more about how to unlock the influence that golf undoubtedly has across the supply chain, and across disparate business interests. Realising these opportunities would stack up to an incredible triple win
- great golf, in a great environment, with high profile business buy-in."

 

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