Synthetic Turf

Synthetic turf is environmentally friendly in origin, application, use, disposal, sustainability and water conservation. A well-maintained natural-turf field requires consistent irrigation and ongoing applications of both fertilizers and pesticides. It is not uncommon for grass fields to require 50,000 gallons or more of irrigation water per week during growing season, and thousands of pounds of fertilizers and pesticides annually.

Overall, synthetic-turf fields substantially decrease water usage, essentially eliminate chemical treatments, and reduce the man hours and power equipment operation needed to maintain a grass field. Just ask the El Paso Independent School District, which installed at least 10 synthetic-turf sports fields at a projected annual savings of 80 million gallons of water and $832,000 in water and maintenance.

Crumb-used-tire rubber infill–which has been safely utilized in synthetic-turf sports fields since it was introduced in 1997–has afforded the opportunity to recycle 25 million used auto tires per year that would otherwise end up in landfills.

Since its inception, the Synthetic Turf Council has gathered and continues to collect much independent, credible research about synthetic turf. Reputable governmental bodies and scientists in Norway, Sweden, Canada, Great Britain, New Jersey, California and Connecticut, international sports organizations such as FIFA and trade institutes have examined the health and environmental aspects of synthetic turf. Their exhaustive efforts have concluded that there is every reason to use synthetic turf, while perceived or proposed environmental and health problems are insignificant.

Transforming Communities

These fields are changing the lives of the athletes who play and practice on them year-round. Entire communities are benefiting from having a place where everyone can gather for football games, fundraising walks and more–like the Thanksgiving Turkey Bowl in Cincinnati, Ohio, where families get together to see who can score the most touchdowns on a full stomach.

Not only are people having fun as a community, but fields now have a life after football season. “Of the 11 away games we played in 2007, only two of the teams played on natural turf. Synthetic turf is a desirable product because so many of us want our facilities to be multi-use,” says Mark Wilson, athletic director at Tennessee Tech. “We have a facility that the football and soccer team can practice on. The band can practice on it too, if needed. We’re stretching our dollars by being sound fiscal managers.”

When it comes to football complexes in particular, synthetic turf is proving to be a terrific fit. With significant enhancements in performance, drainage, durability, quality and safety, the syntheticturf market is now booming in its three major segments–athletic fields, landscaping and golf, and athletic fields–which represent about 60 percent of the overall market. Synthetic turf is also adding to the overall experience and athletic performance of those who play on it, while helping drought-ridden communities save water and bringing neighborhoods together to have fun.

Rick Doyle is president of the Synthetic Turf Council, which was founded in 2003 to serve as an objective resource to assist buyers and end users with the selection, use and maintenance of synthetic-turf systems in sports field, golf and landscape applications. STC members produce and install most of the synthetic-turf sports fields in North America. Membership includes builders, landscape architects, testing labs, maintenance providers, installation contractors and other specialty service companies. For more information, visit

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Related posts:

  1. Synthetic Turf Performance Guidelines
  2. WSU Selects Brock International
  3. Natural Grass Or Synthetic Turf?
  4. Synthetic Turf Fields Save the Day
  5. Biting The Synthetic Bullet

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