|[January 24, 2013]
Panel of Experts Convenes at Michigan State University for The Intelligent Use of Water Summit XIII: Play On! Water Issues in Today's Sport Turf Environment
EAST LANSING, Mich. --(Business Wire)--
Turfgrass, environmental and water conservation experts gathered at
Michigan State University this morning for a panel discussion examining
the science and application sides of turf management in a water
sensitive environment at Rain Bird's Intelligent
Use of Water Summit XIII: "Play on! Water Issues in Today's Sport Turf
Presented in partnership by Rain Bird and the Michigan
Turfgrass Foundation (MTF) at Michigan State University, the
morning-long summit featured brief presentations followed by a series of
expert panel discussions on the topics of water
quality, turfgrass science, irrigation
design and sports/turf course design
as it relates to efficient water use in the green industry.
"Water problems are spreading to places that haven't had them before. At
the same time, the issue should not be viewed as a global crisis, but
rather a series of local crises that may or may not be necessarily
interconnected," said Charles Fishman, New York Times best-selling author
of the book, The Big Thirst, who delivered the events
keynote address. "I believe we are in a transition from an era of
unlimited abundance water to an era of smart water use, where people
have a better understanding of the value of water and use the right
amount of water at the right price."
Serving as Summit panelists were: Dr. Ali Harivandi, University
of California Cooperative, Extension Area Specialist; Shawn Emerson (News - Alert), Director
of Agronomy, Desert Mountain Club; Dr. Stacy Bonos, Associate
Professor, Rutgers Turfgrass Institute; Kenny Mangum, Director of
Golf Courses and Grounds, Atlanta Athletic Club; Mike
Boekholder, Head Groundskeeper, Philadelphia Phillies; Carol
Colein, Executive Director, ASIC; Murray Cook, President,
Brickman Sports Turf; Mitchell Langley, Owner, MDL Consulting; Jon
Allan, Director, Michigan Office of the Great Lakes; and Greg
Lyman, Environmental Programs Director, GCSAA.
Speaking to an audience of green industry veterans and turf management
students, the panelists specifically addressed the discussion topics of water
quality, turfgrass science, irrigation
designsports/turf course design
from both a scientific and application perspective.
In addressing the group of turf management students in today's audience,
Shawn Emerson said, "As technology continues to change the resources
that we all have at our fingertips, future turf managers cannot lose
sight of the importance of observation, learning to recognize the signs
of change, and adapting accordingly."
"Our job is to make sure we have a complete understanding of every
square foot of the turf area that we manage, without a doubt, the two
most important business tools available to turf managers are their
eyes," added Ken Magnum.
"Drought has become a part of our life, and the survival of the green
industry depends on the ability to find alternative sources of water,"
said Dr. Harivandi.
Mike Boekholder, head groundskeeper for the Philadelphia Phillies,
stressed the importance of smart planning and design. "Whether it is a
golf course, little league or major league facility, the turf design
should be dictated by the available watering window, if you only have a
limited amount of time each day to apply water and conduct field
maintenance, then the irrigation system design needs to be able to
efficiently deliver the right amount of water in a limited amount of
time," said Boekholder.
GCSAA Environmental Programs Director Greg Lyman said, "The golf
industry has to be leaders in conservation and efficient water use, and
there is no better place to take a leadership stance than in a state
where we have a seemingly abundant supply of water."
"We [Michigan] are a water rich state, but there are still areas of
limited availability, areas of conflict and areas of strife over water,"
said Jon Allan. "The Great Lakes represent 20% of the World's fresh
water supply, meaning that we have a deep and binding obligation to be
stewards of water. The lakes are not independent entities, but rather an
interconnected system that therefore needs to be managed as a system."
"It is clear that the future of successful turf management will hinge on
the confluence of scientific research and the real world application of
principles by green industry professionals," said Dave Johnson (News - Alert), Rain
Bird's Corporate Marketing Director. "It is very encouraging to see a
mix of veteran green industry professionals and turf management students
in this morning's audience. It is forums like these where we aim to
provide a platform for future turf managers to learn from industry
veterans and prepare to enter an industry that is changing to better
address the need for environmental and water conservation, while still
preserving our green spaces."
Established in 2004 as a forum to further define the relationship
between water conservation and outdoor water use, The Intelligent Use
of Water Summit series presents a view on the current and future
state of water resources through the eyes of water conservation and
environmental experts. Previous summit locations have included:
Pasadena, Calif.; Tucson, Ariz.; Tempe, Ariz.; Madrid, Spain;
Aix-en-Provence, France; Melbourne, Australia; Washington DC; and
A replay of the Intelligent Use of Water Summit XIII: "Play on! Water
Issues in Today's Sport Turf Environment" in its entirety is
available for public viewing on RainBird.com.
For updates on all of Rain Bird's Intelligent Use of Water initiatives,
and visit Rain Bird's Facebook
ABOUT RAIN BIRD CORPORATION
Headquartered in Azusa, Calif., Rain Bird Corporation is the world's
leading manufacturer and provider of irrigation products and services.
From simple beginnings in 1933, Rain Bird now offers the industry's
broadest range of irrigation products for farms, golf courses, sports
arenas, commercial developments and homes, available in more than 130
countries. Rain Bird has been awarded hundreds of patents, including the
first in 1935 for the impact sprinkler. Rain Bird's philosophy called
The Intelligent Use of Water ® is about using water wisely. Its
commitment extends beyond products to education, training and services
for the industry and the community. Rain Bird maintains state-of-the-art
manufacturing facilities around the world. http://www.rainbird.com
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