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2013 RBC Canadian Open will be greenest Open ever

RBC Canadian Open and Ronald McDonald House

The 2013 RBC Canadian Open will be a carbon neutral event Water stations, priority bicycle parking and Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Certification are some of the other highlights of this year's environmental programming

Oakville, Ont. (Golf Canada), July 22, 2013 - Golf Canada and RBC announced today that in conjunction with several event suppliers, a series of environmentally-progressive best practices are being implemented at the 2013 RBC Canadian Open, being held at Glen Abbey Golf Club, July 22 to 28, 2013, in Oakville, Ontario.

“We are committed to making the 2013 RBC Canadian Open the greenest Open ever,” said Bill Paul, Tournament Director for the RBC Canadian Open. “We have a goal to divert more than 70 per cent of waste from landfill and provide patrons with sustainable transportation options such as free bicycle parking just outside the main entrance. Glen Abbey is also a great complement to our environmental programming as the golf course has been certified as an Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary by Audubon International since 2004.”
Traditionally, the only thing ‘green’ about the typical golf course has been its colour, however, a growing number of North American golf courses and organizations are embracing more environmentally responsible and sustainable approaches to golf course design, construction and maintenance.

“As part of our commitment to golf and our longstanding focus on environmental sustainability, we’re proud to announce that the 2013 RBC Canadian Open will be a carbon neutral event,” explained Sandra Odendahl, Director, Corporate Sustainability, RBC. “During the past few years we have worked closely with Golf Canada and our other event partners to apply progressive best practices to reduce the environmental impacts of the RBC Canadian Open.”

Here are some of the key initiatives relating to GHG emissions being implemented at the 2013 RBC Canadian Open:

  • The event will use 100 per cent clean, renewable electricity from Bullfrog Power certified by Environment Canada under its EcoLogoM program and green natural gas which meets environmental standards as defined by ICF International.
  • GHG emissions associated with the use of diesel generators and event vehicles (i.e. shuttle buses and courtesy vehicles provided by BMW Group and Attridge Transportation) will be neutralized through the purchase and retirement of high quality carbon offsets. The carbon offsets will be acquired through RBC’s carbon emissions trading group in RBC Capital Markets.

The goal is to divert more than 70 per cent of waste from landfill, exceeding the diversion rate from last year’s RBC Canadian Open through the following initiatives:

  • Halton Region and Miller Waste Systems has assisted Golf Canada in designing a comprehensive waste management program aimed at reducing the amount of waste being sent to landfill, through recycling and organics diversion. Halton Region is providing Golf Canada with the tools to help patrons, players and food vendors put waste in the right place.
  • For the third consecutive year, Event Water Solutions is providing free filtered water at five water stations located across the grounds. Last year, more than 53,000 bottles were filled at the water stations, significantly reducing the need for disposable water bottles. Collapsible water bottles will be available for purchase at the tournament with proceeds benefiting the official charity partner, Ronald McDonald House Charities Canada.
  • Concession service provider Spectrum is reducing waste by using compostable or recyclable food packaging. Many of the catering areas will be using dishware and stainless cutlery to reduce the need for disposable items. They will also ensure that styrofoam is not used to serve food or beverages, and condiments will be served in bulk where possible.
  • Unused food will be donated to local food banks. Food items not suitable for donation will be separated for composting.
  • The Burloak Canoe Club is kicking-in with a team of volunteers to ensure all waste is properly sorted before disposal in bins and that the golf course remains litter free.
  • The traditionally printed souvenir program which gets distributed onsite will be replaced with a digital tournament web app that spectators can enjoy on their smartphones. The link to the RBC Canadian Open digital web app is

The 2013 RBC Canadian Open has also taken steps to reduce the environmental impacts of transportation and providing sustainable transportation options through the following initiatives:

  • The Town of Oakville and GranFondo Canada will be offering free bicycle parking for ticket holders and tournament volunteers just outside the Spectator Entrance.
  • Courtesy vehicles and shuttles provided by BMW Group, the ActiveHybrid 5 Series’ and X5 Diesels models, are strong representations of BMW Group’s commitment to sustainability and include the latest fuel-saving technologies such as Auto Start/Stop, ECO PRO mode and Brake Regeneration.
  • The Town of Oakville, Region of Halton and Halton Regional Police worked with Golf Canada to assess many opportunities to improve traffic flow and travel to and from the event to minimize congestion and impact on local air quality through reduced idling of cars.

Since 2004, Glen Abbey has been certified as an Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary by Audubon International. Only four per cent of Canadian golf courses have this prestigious environmental designation. To earn this designation, golf courses are subjected to an audit and certification program covering six categories: Environmental Planning, Chemical Use Reduction & Safety, Water Conservation, Water Quality Management, Wildlife & Habitat Management, and Outreach & Education.


Part of the FedExCup, stars of the PGA TOUR will compete for $5.6 million (US) at the RBC Canadian Open, July 22-28, 2013 at Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville, Ont. Conducted by Golf Canada for more than a century, the RBC Canadian Open provides an opportunity for Canada’s top talents to compete against the world’s best golfers while also leaving a significant impact in the event’s host community. The RBC Canadian Open is proud to support Ronald McDonald House Charities Canada as the event’s official charity partner. Established in 1904, Canada’s national open golf championship is the third-oldest national open golf championship worldwide next to the British Open and the U.S. Open. The RBC Canadian Open is proudly sponsored by RBC, Shaw Business, BMW Group Canada, C.F.F Stainless Steels, Molson Canadian 67, TaylorMade adidas Golf, The Glenlivet, PepsiCo, The Globe and Mail, Jacob’s Creek, Keystone Dental, Jack Link’s Beef Jerky and 5-hour Energy. For tickets or tournament information, please visit or call 1-800-571-6736.

RBC proudly supports golf around the world through high profile relationships with the PGA TOUR and Golf Canada. RBC is the Official Banking and Financial Services partner of touring professionals Luke Donald, Brandt Snedeker, Graeme McDowell, Hunter Mahan, Matt Kuchar, Ernie Els, Jim Furyk, Mike Weir, Stephen Ames, and Morgan Pressel. As the title sponsor of both the RBC Heritage and the RBC Canadian Open, RBC also supports emerging Canadian golfers through Golf Canada's grassroots developmental programming, their Canadian Amateur Golf Championships and high performance national team. RBC is one of North America's leading diversified financial services companies and among the largest banks in the world, as measured by market capitalization.

Golf Canada is the National Sports Organization and governing body for golf in Canada representing more than 340,000 golfers at nearly 1,500 member clubs across the country. A proud member of the Canadian Olympic Committee, Golf Canada's mission is to grow participation, excellence and passion in the sport while upholding the integrity and traditions of the game. By investing in the growth of the sport and introducing more participants of all ages to the game, our goal is to be relevant to and respected by all Canadian golf enthusiasts from coast to coast. For more information about what Golf Canada is doing to support golf in your community, visit

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Media Contacts:
Dan Pino
Director, Corporate Communications
Golf Canada
(t) 1-800-263-0009 ext. 406
(c) 416-434-5525

André Roberts
Senior Director, Brand & Corporate Citizenship Communications
(t) 416.974.3678