Wednesday Oct 18, 2023

Episode 3: Royal Portrush’s Road to Carbon Neutrality

Welcome to the Golf Sustainability Podcast! In this episode, host John Failla engages in an enlightening conversation with Graeme Beatt, the Course Manager at Royal Portrush Golf Course in Ireland. Graeme shares insights into the fascinating work happening at Royal Portrush as they prepare to host the 153rd Open in 2025. Join us for this engaging discussion as we explore Graeme's background, his journey to becoming Course Manager, and the sustainability initiatives transforming the golf course. Discover how Royal Portrush is committed to sustainability, from solar panels and lithium-powered equipment to biofuels and carbon neutrality goals. Learn about the partnerships that play a pivotal role in their sustainability journey, including their collaboration with the GEO Foundation. If you're passionate about golf and sustainability, this podcast is a must-listen! Don't miss out on the valuable insights and innovative ideas shared in this episode.

Stay tuned for more episodes of the Golf Sustainability Podcast, where we explore the intersection of golf and environmental responsibility with industry experts and leaders like Graeme Beatt. Subscribe now and join the conversation on the future of sustainable golf courses.

Topics Covered


  1. Transition to Sustainable Practices (Timestamp: 0:00 - 0:28)
  • In this topic, the discussion revolves around the golf course's transition to sustainable practices, including the installation of solar panels, the switch to lithium-powered equipment, and the use of biofuels for vehicles.
Background and Heritage of Royal Portrush (Timestamp: 3:00 - 10:02)
  • This topic provides insights into the history and heritage of Royal Portrush golf course, covering its establishment in 1888, architectural changes over the years, and its commitment to environmental responsibility throughout its history.
Preparations for Hosting the 153rd Open in 2025 (Timestamp: 23:51 - 29:57)
  • Here, the focus is on the preparations for hosting the 153rd Open at Royal Portrush in 2025. It includes discussions about course improvements, renovations, and the commitment to becoming carbon neutral for the event.
Reputable Golf Organizations (Timestamp: 30:03)
  • Description: The conversation starts with a discussion about reputable golf organizations, particularly one not as high-profile in the United States as it is in Europe.
Sustainability Efforts by the R&A (Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews) ((Timestamp: 30:17):
  • Description: The conversation highlights the sustainability efforts of the R&A, with a focus on sustainability-related initiatives and support lent by the R&A to enhance sustainability in golf course operations.
Challenges and Growth in Golf Course Management (Timestamp: 42:01):
  • Description: This topic revolves around the challenges and personal growth experienced in transitioning from a greenkeeper to a golf course manager, discussing the importance of setting high standards and the future aspirations in golf course management.

Resources and People Mentioned

  • John Failla: The host of the Golf Sustainability Podcast, who interviewed Jason Straka in the episode.
  • Graeme Beatt: Manager at Royal Portrush Golf Club
  • The R&A (


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Graeme Beatt

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Note: Timestamps provided are approximate.

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