I love golf as much as the next middle-aged white male. I am being serious. I love golf. However, I also love the environment and while some may think that golf and the environment go hand in hand that is often not the case. Sure you are outside playing in the sand, the trees, and hopefully the grass. You are connecting with the environment. You may not be able to make a putt, but at least you are breathing in fresh air. I guess it is fresh, except for all the air pollutants. Unfortunately golf courses tend to have a detrimental effect on the environment. In order to keep the course in pristine shape the ground crew uses pesticides, which causes groundwater pollution. Moreover, golf courses employ wasteful water usage practices. Also, the golf landscape can have damaging results on surrounding wildlife, forcing animals out of their natural habitats. Let's not forget about the best part of golf – the golf cart. While the golf cart encourages faster play and laziness, it is extremely bad for the environment. Golf cart engines, similar to that of lawn mowers and speed boats, emit a greater amount of pollution than regular cars. Don't worry though, there is hope. No not for your golf game, but there is hope for golf courses. The Audubon society has created a certification program for golf courses. A golf course can gain the green stamp of approval if it meets the environmental management standards in the following areas: wildlife and habitat management, chemical use reduction and safety, water conservation, water quality management, and outreach and education. I guess it is possible to simultaneously love golf and the environment. Please encourage your local golf course to take a stand and get involved in the Audubon's Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses. Your game may continue to suffer, but the environment shouldn't have to.