Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP)
Major changes are taking place in the approach to golf course management. The natural link between the game of golf and the surrounding environment is at the core of this paradigm shift within the industry. Leading the way through education, research funding, and innovative projects is the United States Golf Association (USGA).
One of the principal initiatives of this movement is the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP) for Golf Courses, a collaboration between the USGA and Audubon International. The ACSP advises and certifies golf courses in best management environmental practices. Each course develops its own plan, unique to its natural setting and the goals of management.
Certification requires planning and demonstration of:
- Environmental Planning
- Wildlife Habitat Management
- Chemical Use Reduction and Safety
- Water Conservation
- Water Quality Management
- Outreach and Education
Involvement in the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses is a win-win situation for club members and the environment. A healthy course is essential to the economic prosperity of a golf club. Sustainability, marketability and profitability flow from the union of environmental and financial stewardship.
A few of the benefits that ACSP members report include:
- Enhancement Habitat and Natural Beauty
- Financial Savings on Course Management
- Reduction of Water Use and the Need for Expensive Chemicals
- Improved Water Quality
- Promotion of Environmental Stewardship and Awareness
- Attraction of a Variety of Bird and Butterflies with Native Plantings
Maintaining the highest playing standards while being good stewards of the environment has a positive impact on members, nature and the bottom line.
The ACSP and Royal Oaks Country Club
Royal Oaks joined the ACSP in 1989 and was initially certified in 1997. Our program includes activities of interest to all family members. The Royal Oaks’ bird cam is recognized nationally as an innovative tool to promote and monitor wildlife. An Audubon Awareness Day, held in conjunction with Junior Golf, demonstrates the variety of birds, mammals and amphibians sharing our course to our youngest members, while the annual Father’s Day Fishing Derby is a fun family tradition.
More than 2,200 courses in the United States, Canada and throughout the world are members of the ACSP for Golf Courses. In Washington and Oregon alone, more than 30 courses are certified members. In addition to Royal Oaks, certified courses in the Portland metropolitan area include:
- The Oregon Golf Club
- Columbia Edgewater Country Club
- Tualatin Country Club
- Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club
- Heron Lakes Golf Club
- Stone Creek Golf Club
New projects continue to emerge, providing opportunities for members of all ages. Some of our ongoing projects, such as the monitoring of nesting bird boxes and the shoreline habitat restoration project, provide a means for monitoring our continued progress.
The ACSP group at Royal Oaks welcomes members to join us in making Royal Oaks an even richer setting for the game of golf. For more information, please contact Al Nielsen at (360) 256-1530