FOUR projects in Perthshire are to benefit from almost £250,000 in funding from the Scottish Government as part the “green” legacy of next year’s Ryder Cup clash between the top golfers from Europe and America.
The funding has been awarded as part of the Ryder Cup Green Drive, aimed at integrating sustainability across all aspects of the event’s planning and staging.
The four projects are: Zero Waste Fortnight, an initiative run by Perth and Kinross Council and Zero Waste Scotland to support communities in Perthshire to achieve zero waste to landfill; Sustainable Golf, a project which provides practical advice and small grants to support for environmental and community projects in golf clubs in Perthshire; the John Muir Trust; and Big Tree Country, the organisation dedicated to conserving Perthshire’s woodland and forest landscape.
Announcing the grants at Auchterarder Golf Club today , Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead said: “Hosting The Ryder Cup brings many benefits to Scotland that will last longer than the world class sporting action we will see next September.
“These benefits include business opportunities for Scottish firms winning event contracts, as well as improvements to local infrastructure, such as the work being done at Gleneagles Station. “
He continued: “Sporting events around the world are embracing sustainability and the Ryder Cup provides Scotland an opportunity, when the eyes of the world will be watching, to emphasise the benefits we all derive from healthy and diverse natural landscapes. It is highly appropriate to drive these projects off in the Year of Natural Scotland. We can utilise the Ryder Cup to inspire communities and businesses, for example through some of the projects announced today, in the drive to a greener and more sustainable future.”
Jonathan Smith, chief executive of the Golf Environment Organisation, which advises Ryder Cup Europe on sustainability, said: “The Ryder Cup Green Drive rightly focuses on making the event itself as sustainable as possible. While Gleneagles has already finalised a new sustainability action plan incorporating site protection and restoration plans, this was an opportunity to extend the legacy of the event beyond the boundaries of Gleneagles itself.”
Edward Kitson, the match director for The 2014 Ryder Cup, said: “While the attention of the world will focus on Gleneagles in September 2014, we are committed to ensuring that the legacy of The Ryder Cup reaches beyond the host venue. These projects will extend the sustainable legacy of the event and we are delighted by the support offered by the Scottish Government, Perth and Kinross Council, and the Golf Environment Organisation.”