Golf Course Management

APR 2013

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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Page 39 of 141

THE INSIDER: turf Teresa Carson Calculating your savings The Energy Snapshot can provide a quick estimate of a golf course's potential annual savings in energy and water costs and reduced carbon emissions. Illustration courtesy of Staples Golf NEWS & notes A team from the University of Connecticut Turf Club won the annual Tee2-Green Collegiate Turf Team Challenge at the Golf Industry Show in San Diego. Turf schools from around the country competed in the Turf Team Challenge, which was held in the Tee-2-Green booth on the trade show floor. The students answered a series of turf- and golf-related questions. At the end of two days, four teams were tied with 4,500 points. In the championship playoff round, the UConn Turf Club edged out last year's championship team, Ohio State, as well as SUNY Cobleskill and Oregon State University. The name of the UConn Turf Club will be engraved on the Seeds of Fortune trophy, and the club will receive a plaque commemorating their win. To play the Tee-2-Green Seeds of Fortune game, visit Presented in partnership with Barenbrug 38 GCM April 2013 Do you want a snapshot of energy use on your entire golf course? Do you want to know the potential for energy and water savings on your course? Have you got 20 minutes? If you do, Staples Golf says they can give you an "energy snapshot," using what they describe as "the industry's frst tablet-based energy and water savings calculator." In other words, they have an app for that. Stephen Quick, project manager for Staples Golf, says, "It's an educational tool. It is a surveystyle app for the iPad that gives superintendents a snapshot of their water and energy use. If they know what they budget for water and energy, the calculator can tell them potentially how much they can save in water and energy costs and how that translates to reductions in carbon emissions. The calculator produces a PDF report that is a summary of separate water and energy savings and tips for changes that could be made around the facility to help generate those savings." The app was originally built as an in-house tool to speed up processes in the company's offce. In the past, superintendents would have to answer the survey questions and wait for a report. Now a superintendent can answer the questions over the phone and receive a report within minutes of completing the survey. According to Quick, an individual golf course or a management company that runs several courses can use the app to fnd out how effcient they are and how much money they can potentially save. "Golf courses are generally very good at water conservation because the golf course industry has been hammered in that area," says Quick, "but many people are not familiar with the relationship between water use and energy costs." Quick says that realizing the goal suggested by the app is usually a mix of replacing equipment and managing the way superintendents do things at their courses. "A lot of separate little steps can add up to a big savings," he says. "What takes the most time to achieve is making sure everyone at the golf course is on board." A new version of the app is in development. Industry partners in golf course architecture and irrigation are cooperating with the company and will be looking at ways to maximize the app's effectiveness. The app is not available online, but superintendents can contact Staples Golf by phone or email ( They will walk you through the survey and send you the PDF report at no charge. "We want people to understand how we got the results," says Quick. "The app has produced accurate estimates for courses across the country, whether they are in New York, Connecticut, Phoenix or Oregon. We're quite happy about the results." GCM Teresa Carson ( is GCM's science editor.

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