Texel: Triple solution of design, water and energy
Three problems and a sustainable overall solution. This is the conclusion you come to when you look at the renovation work that Golfbaan De Texelse has undergone in recent years. The 27 holes golf course on the island of Texel in the north of the Netherlands is privately owned, the campsite next to it has the same owner. Surrounded by the North Sea, the golf course had one main problem for years: water.
This is one of the driest spots in Holland,” explains Alan Rijks, the golf course designer responsible for the course. Due to the location in the nature reserve, there was no authorization to extract groundwater for years. Tankers brought the precious water to the golf course. The costs were enormous, as was the logistical effort.
Water reservoirs therefore had to be created in order to collect rainwater and drainage water and thus not only reduce the operating costs of the plant, but also make its operation significantly more sustainable. “The problem with large storage ponds is always the evaporation of water,” explains Rijks, who was responsible for the expansion and conversion of the golf course together with his assistant Leonard Nunen. The photovoltaic system was installed by a specialist company, although in the Netherlands lakes with photovoltaic systems are also used by energy producers such as RWE.
With the expansion of the original 9-hole course to 18 holes, a 7700 m² pond with a capacity of 17,700 m³ of water was built in 2017. Installed on it are 2,400 solar panels that generate a total of 780,000 kW per year. This was followed in 2022 by a 5500 m² pond with a capacity of 12,500 m³ of water, which is equipped with 1600 panels. Its output is 650,000 kW per year.
Premiere on a golf course
The biggest problem, according to Alan Rijks, was the approval of the pond, “because it was simply the first time we had done something like this on a golf course.” Right from the start, the visual appearance was also important to him and the operators of the golf courses. The two water areas are well protected by dunes and cannot be seen directly from the campsite.
The innovative technical solution is a great benefit for Golfbaan De Texelse. “Firstly, we have less evaporation in the pond, and secondly, algae formation is prevented,” explains manager Anita Hiemstra. “The solar panels supply the golf course with energy and also the adjacent De Krim vacation park.” They are cleaned once a year, otherwise the company that installed them provides support.
Now that the tanker trucks with drinking water are a thing of the past, the golf course has solved the water and energy problem and, thanks to the expansion, also has a better golf course. “This really is an energy project that we are proud of,” says Hiemstra .