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Episode 5: The Greatest Office in the World

In this special episode, we’re joined by Craig Boath, Head of Sustainability at Carnoustie Golf Links in Scotland. Craig is a pioneering figure in the golf industry, being one of the first superintendents to hold the role of Head of Sustainability.

John and Craig discuss various aspects of sustainability and golf, including Craig’s career journey in the industry, the rich heritage of Carnoustie Golf Links, and the environmental and social initiatives undertaken by the course. They delve into partnerships with organizations like GEO (Golf Environment Organization) and suppliers like John Deere and Rainbird to implement sustainable practices and technologies on the course.

Craig emphasizes the importance of data collection and measurement in sustainability efforts, as well as the challenges of meeting golfer expectations while pursuing sustainability goals. He also shares his personal motivation and inspiration for preserving and enhancing Carnoustie for future generations.

Join us for an enlightening conversation about golf and sustainability, and how golf courses can make a positive impact on the environment and their communities. Subscribe to the Golf Sustainability Podcast to stay updated on more episodes like this one. Thank you for tuning in!

Topics Covered

1. Introduction and Background of Craig Boath (0:00 – 3:28)

  • Introduction to the podcast and guest, Craig Boath.
  • Craig Boath’s career journey in the golf industry, starting with his interest in greenkeeping

2. The History of Carnoustie Golf Links (3:28 – 8:51)

  • The historical significance and heritage of Carnoustie Golf Links.
  • Mention of famous golfers and architects associated with the course.
  • Craig Boath’s involvement in various Open Championships held at Carnoustie.

3. Environmental Initiatives at Carnoustie (8:51 – 12:38)

  • Overview of sustainability and environmental efforts at Carnoustie.
  • Examples of current sustainability projects and practices on the golf course.
  • Discussion of pond management, tree planting, and beekeeping.

 4. Social Initiatives and Community Benefits (12:38 – 16:50)

  • Description of Carnoustie’s community benefit program.
  • Involvement with groups like Kirsty Memories, disabled golfers, and junior golfers.
  • Focus on making golf more accessible to diverse groups of people.

5. Partnerships and Collaboration (16:50 – 26:06)

  • Collaboration with organizations like GEO Foundation and RNA.
  • Details about a five-year biodiversity program and carbon capture initiatives.
  • Supplier partnerships with John Deere and Rain Bird and their contributions to sustainability efforts.

6. Balancing Aesthetics with Sustainability (26:06 – 29:21)

  • Addressing the “Augusta effect” and member expectations for course aesthetics.
  • Challenges of meeting high expectations for course conditions while prioritizing sustainability.

7. Future Sustainability Initiatives (29:21 – 31:05)

  • Insights into upcoming sustainability projects and goals.
  • Mention of data-driven approaches to sustainability.
  • The importance of continuously improving sustainability practices.

8. Personal Insights and Inspirations (31:05 – 32:10)

  • Craig Boath’s personal motivation and inspiration in his role.
  • Mention of individuals who have inspired him in the golf industry.

Resources and People Mentioned


Connect with Our Guests

Craig Boath


Connect with Carnoustie Golf Links


Connect With Golf Sustainability


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Note: Timestamps provided are approximate

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