To reach certification, a course must demonstrate that they are maintaining a high degree of environmental quality in a number of areas. These categories include environmental planning, wildlife and habitat management, outreach and education, chemical use reduction and safety, water conservation and water quality management. You have to achieve individual certification and when you have finished all six, you become a co-operative sanctuary.
The Audubon Co-operative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses, endorsed by the Royal Canadian Golf Association, provides information and guidance to help golf courses preserve and enhance wildlife habitat, and protect natural resources.
Golf courses from Canada, the United States, Africa, Australia, Central America, Europe, Mexico and southeast Asia have also achieved certification in the program.
Bell Bay becomes the third certified course in Nova Scotia, joining Glen Arbour Golf Club in Hammonds Plains and Highland Links in Ingonish.