Environmental Impact of Golf Courses

Date:         Wed, 15 Dec 1993 12:00:50 -0600                                   
Reply-To:     H-Rural Rural & Agricultural History discussion                   
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
From:         "Jim Oberly, History Dept.,                                       
              U of Wisc-Eau Claire" <JOBERLY@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU>                   
Subject:      Environmental Impact of golf courses                              

[From: IN%"dale@dale.cam.org" "Dale Wharton" 15-DEC-1993 11:54:10.76 [To: IN%"JOBERLY@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU" "Jim Oberly, H-Rural editor" [Subj: Environmental Impacts of Golf Courses

I'd like to look into the issue of the environmental impacts of golf courses. Any written references will be appreciated. (I saw the article in SIERRA last summer and read it; it raises some important issues but its tone was, it seems to me, propogandistic with a lot of loaded language ('greed,' 'developers') and so forth; it did not speak to SOLUTIONS, though the author is a golfer and I'm sure has an interest and making golf a 'greener game.' It was a thoroughly disappointing article.)

But that doesn't mean that there is no problem. What to read?

Some issues:

--Spur suburban development by providing a focus for new homes and encouraging leap-frogging of existing development.

--Another issue, but not particular to golf but in common with any other development, is potential conflict with wetlands and endangered species.

--Then there is use of herbicides etc. to maintain the grasses on fairways and greens; the run-off would cause some water pollution problems.

--Then there would be issues of water consumption: a great deal. Perhaps there are more.

Any suggestions on other issues to look for and for articles/books to reading.

BTW, I write this as an avid golfer. A VERY avid golfer.

Cheers, David Sucher@cyperspace.com



Date:         Wed, 15 Dec 1993 13:06:29 -0600                                   
Reply-To:     H-Rural Rural & Agricultural History discussion                   
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
From:         "Jim Oberly, History Dept.,                                       
              U of Wisc-Eau Claire" <JOBERLY@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU>                   
Subject:      Re: Environmental Impact of golf courses                          

[From: IN%"walsh%atlas.socsci.umn.edu@UICVM.UIC.EDU" 15-DEC-1993 12:40:42.14 [To: IN%"H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET" [Subj: RE: Environmental Impact of golf courses

David Sucher:

I don't know of articles on golf and environment but I know that Californians argued vehemently about that very issue during their several years of drought just past. You might want to check such sources as the LA Times and state legislative debates. (Car washes and hotels also came under scrutiny regarding water usage.)

Eileen Walsh History Dept. University of Minnesota walsh@atlas.socsci.umn.edu



Date:         Wed, 15 Dec 1993 15:28:08 -0600                                   
Reply-To:     H-Rural Rural & Agricultural History discussion                   
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
From:         "Jim Oberly, History Dept.,                                       
              U of Wisc-Eau Claire" <JOBERLY@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU>                   
Subject:      Re: Environmental Impact of golf courses                          

[From: IN%"CRONSHAW%UNMB.BITNET@UICVM.UIC.EDU" 15-DEC-1993 15:26:51.59 [To: IN%"H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET" [Subj: RE: Environmental Impact of golf courses

George Carlin did a wonderful routine on golf courses, complete with planetary impact, a couple of years ago (on HBO, I believe). Sounds like a good topic. Regards Francine Cronshaw Latin American Institute University of New Mexico cronshaw@unmb



Date:         Wed, 15 Dec 1993 15:42:26 -0600                                   
Reply-To:     H-Rural Rural & Agricultural History discussion                   
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
From:         "Jim Oberly, History Dept.,                                       
              U of Wisc-Eau Claire" <JOBERLY@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU>                   
Subject:      Geography of golf courses                                         

H-Rural readers,

Today's discussion about the environment and golf courses reminded me that geographers have done some work on this topic, too. In the past, I have made use of John F. Rooney's _Geography of American Sport_ (1974) which has quite a few maps about the dispersion of golf courses in the U.S. One of Rooney's contributions is to show that public golf courses are heavily concentrated in the Midwest and Northeast, while private golf courses are more likely to be found in the Sunbelt.

I heard Rooney give a talk about three years ago when he was at work on his _Atlas of American Sport_ which I believe came out last year. Anyway, one of his themes was the connection between land development and golf courses. He had some interesting maps to show demonstrating that a developer can maximize profits on a golf course by wrapping as many fairways as possible around the condominiums.

The original post on this topic came from H-Urban, I believe, and the context of the discussion was about land use outside of cities. It has occurred, to me, however, that there are certain rural golf paradises that deserve to have their history written. In particular, I think of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. Think of the momentous changes in the history of that island: from rice cultivation and Sea Island staple cotton production before the Civil War, to free territory after 1861 and center of Gullah culture, to the struggles of reimposing the plantation during Reconstruction, and eventually to vacation paradise and home to numerous golf courses and PGA tournaments today.

--Jim Oberly, H-Rural Moderator Dept. of History Univ. of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Eau Claire, WI 54701 JOBERLY@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU



Date:         Thu, 16 Dec 1993 07:14:50 -0600                                   
Reply-To:     H-Rural Rural & Agricultural History discussion                   
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              <H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET>                                            
From:         "Jim Oberly, History Dept.,                                       
              U of Wisc-Eau Claire" <JOBERLY@CNSVAX.UWEC.EDU>                   
Subject:      Re: Environmental Impact of Golf Courses                          

[From: IN%"HBARRON%HMCVAX.Ac.HMC.Edu@UICVM.UIC.EDU" 15-DEC-1993 19:04:10.19 [ To: IN%"H-RURAL@UICVM.BITNET" [Subj: RE: Environmental Impact of golf courses

Concerning golf and theenvironment, you might want to ask Howard Rabinowitz at the University of New Mexico. He has written on the history of sun-belt cities and he is an avid golfer who writes for golfing magazines as well.

Hal Barron HBARRON@HMCVAX.Claremont.EDU


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Unit: H-Net program at UIC History Department Email: H-Net@uicvm.uic.edu
Posted: 9 Jul 1994

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