The Olympic Club, based in San Francisco, host of five U.S. Opens and one of America's oldest athletic clubs, released its 2016 Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) report today, sharing its progress toward environmental, social, and economic sustainability. The report, developed in collaboration with IMPACT360 Sports, a women-owned independent third party, marks the first comprehensive CSR report in North America within the golf industry, redefining what it means to be a top 100 course and athletic club.
The Olympic Club ranked 33rd on Golf Digest's "America's 100 Greatest Courses" list in 2015 and has attained ranking every year since 1966. With today's announcement, The Club elevates its status as the first U.S. course to publish a CSR report showing transparency in operations related to the environment, community, and economy - while exhibiting the aesthetics, performance, and playability of a top 100 course.
"We hope to display leadership in the sports industry, and golf industry in particular, to be good stewards of the environment, while promoting community engagement, and making a positive economic impact," said The Olympic Club General Manager Pat Finlen. "We want to grow the game of golf and our 17 other sports within the Club; and we are committed to doing it in a sustainable manner."
According to GCSAA, recycled water accounts for 25 percent of all water used on golf courses in the United States. The Olympic Club reports that recycled water accounts for 89 percent of water used at its athletic club and golf courses combined, with recycled water accounting for 97 percent of water used at its golf course alone.
With golf re-entering the Olympics in 2016 and a growing opportunity to engage the millennial market segment, there is a heightened focus on the environment and increasing diversity within the sport worldwide.
"With more than 15,000 courses in the United States, The Olympic Club is elevating its commitment to the environment, diversity, and community within an industry that needs to embrace sustainability to grow the game," said IMPACT360 Sports Co-Founder Aubrey McCormick. "As a former professional golfer, I am particularly proud of The Olympic Club. Fans and future golfers are going to align with athletes and courses that share their values. CSR reporting and sustainability will be increasingly important."
IMPACT360 Sports integrated the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) G4 and United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) frameworks within the report to gauge and measure activities using a whole-value sustainability approach. GRI provides the world's most widely used standards on sustainability reporting encompassing ethical procurement, natural resource use, diversity, inclusion, and governance. The SDGs were adopted by world leaders at the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit in 2015 to tackle inequality, injustice, and climate change.
"We are showing local and global sustainability impacts through alignment with the GRI G4 framework and SDGs," said IMPACT360 Sports Co-Founder Gina Rizzi. "More than 92 percent of the world's largest 250 corporations report on sustainability using the GRI framework. These companies recognize that sustainability is important to customers and integral to operations; this CSR report positions The Olympic Club alongside these leading organizations."