9 Ways the Phoenix Open Changed Golf

The Phoenix Open 18th Hole by Amanda Wills

The quiet before the storm: The Phoenix Open is the highest-attended golf tournament on the PGA Tour, drawing in a crowd of more than 500,000. Photo: Amanda Wills, Earth911

The PGA Tour isn’t known for its eco-friendly efforts. In fact, the game of golf in and of itself is a resource-intensive sport. The average 18-hole course covers 125-150 acres of land, all of which has to be maintained. Tack on a tournament or two, and that course’s footprint skyrockets.

The Phoenix Open is the highest-attended tournament on the tour, with a tally that totals to more than 500,000 people. Smack dab in the middle of a desert, water usage and waste production is a major concern. As title sponsor, Waste Management is determined to make it the No. 1 greenest tournament on the tour.

Earth911 got a VIP tour of the course before the tournament started on Thursday. Here’s the “front nine” of the greenest show on grass.

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  1. Waste Management has done a superb job of offsetting what spectators bring to the sport. There’s still all that grass to consider though. Not only does it suck up water, it’s chemically treated…where does all that runoff go?

  2. Now if only the Phoenix Open could get Tiger Woods to return. Unfortunately, something turned off Woods and he’s been a no-show at this event for the past several years.

  3. You’ve got to be kidding me. The only “green” golf in Arizona would have to be played on dirt. It’s great that they’re reducing, but please don’t try to pretend this is some kind of fabulous green event.

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