Synthetic Turf Council
To maximize the appearance, performance and longevity of your synthetic turf surface, maintenance is essential.
To provide direction on this important issue, the Synthetic Turf Council has released new, improved guidelines that meet the requirements of today’s artificial turf systems. The STC states four key areas that drive the need for objective synthetic turf maintenance guidelines:
1. Maximize the appearance and longevity of your synthetic turf—Improperly maintained fields will degrade faster and compromise playing conditions.
2. Ensure maximum performance and playability—Through a combination of regular maintenance and performance testing, it is possible to track the synthetic sports field’s performance and anticipate the end of its useful life.
3. Address field usage topics and special circumstances—Factors such as age, hours of use, type of usage, climate, contamination and other situations impact the performance of the synthetic turf.
4. Meet your field’s warranty requirements—While a maintenance regimen can support the requirements of a warranty, the details of a maintenance plan should be carefully reviewed with the field builder to assure that it complies with and does not void any provisions of the warranty.
*source: Synthetic Turf Council
Ongoing routine maintenance can include keeping the playing surface free of debris, maintaining proper infill levels, and brushing the turf. More specialized maintenance may include decompaction, seam repairs and cleaning of the infill. These comprehensive guidelines discuss all aspects of maintenance from proper cleaning materials, to equipment and techniques, so you can keep your field in top performing condition.
You can follow the link to download your own copy of the “STC Guidelines for Maintenance of Infilled Synthetic Turf Sports Fields”.
New board elected at recent membership meeting
Austin, Texas (October 18, 2012) – John Baize, managing director of Act Global Sports, was recently re-elected to the Board of Directors and then named Chairman of the Synthetic Turf Council (STC) during its Annual Membership Meeting in Dallas, Texas.
The STC promotes the industry, educates the general public, and assists buyers and end users with the selection, use and maintenance of synthetic turf systems in sports field, golf and landscape applications. Baize’s re-election to the Board recognizes his leadership position within the industry overall.
“Our Board plays an extremely active role in shaping the strategic direction of the Council,” explains Rick Doyle, president of the Synthetic Turf Council. “John’s contributions to the industry are well-known, and we are confident the association will continue to grow under his leadership.”
Based in Austin, Texas USA, Act Global specializes in the manufacturing of synthetic turf for sports, landscaping, airport and specialty uses. The company has installations in 70 countries around the world, and is an STC Certified Manufacturer, FIFA Preferred Producer for Football Turf and ISO 9001 Quality Certified. Baize has been especially committed to advancing STC’s mission of maintaining the highest quality practices and standards throughout the industry.
Baize comments, “The Synthetic Turf Council is comprised of an amazing group of women and men who spend so much of their time to serve our industry. I am very honored and pleased to be a member and to be appointed as Chairman of the STC. Our new Board of Directors already held two meetings and I am so happy to be part of such a highly talented and engaged team. We will work together to grow our industry and further our mission to promote community wellness and environmental responsibility through the use of synthetic turf.”
Demand for synthetic turf has escalated over the past few years, with about 8,000 athletic fields currently in operation across North America. Each year, thousands of residences, businesses, parks, municipal spaces and golf courses turn to synthetic turf for its numerous benefits.
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About Act Global Sports
Act Global Sports, headquartered in Austin, Texas, is a world leader in synthetic turf and artificial grass manufacturing. The company’s monofilament and fibrillated artificial Xtreme Turf and Xtreme Lawn products replicate natural grass for use in international stadiums, indoor sport centers, field grass, synthetic lawns and other synthetic grass uses. Act Global has four manufacturing locations in USA, Europe and Asia and have sold to 70 countries through an expanding partner network of leading sport field and landscape contractors. Act Global is notable for being the first company in the world that is a FIFA Preferred Producer for Football Turf, Synthetic Turf Council Certified Manufacturer and holds an ISO 9001 certification. For more information, visit www.actglobalsports.com.
About the Synthetic Turf Council
Based in Atlanta, the Synthetic Turf Council was founded in 2003 to promote the industry and to assist buyers and end users with the selection, use and maintenance of synthetic turf systems in sports field, golf, municipal parks, airports, landscape and residential applications. The organization is also a resource for current, credible, and independent research on the safety and environmental impact of synthetic turf. Membership includes builders, landscape architects, testing labs, maintenance providers, manufacturers, suppliers, installation contractors, infill material suppliers and other specialty service companies. For more information, visit www.syntheticturfcouncil.org.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Austin, Texas
Leading North American industry delegates explore the benefits of the FIFA Quality Concept for Football Turf
Following the Synthetic Turf Council Meetings held in Las Vegas, leading USA manufacturer ACT Global Sports hosted a FIFA Seminar for industry design consultants, test institutes, manufacturers, contractors and maintenance providers. The FIFA delegation was represented by Group Leader Mr. Johannes Holzmuller, Junior Manager Nicholas Evans and Dr. Eric Harrison, the primary author of the FIFA Quality Concept for Football Turf. The presentations by these experts and information from ACT Global as a FIFA Preferred Producer for Football Turf provided the attendees a greater understanding of the roadmap to a truly highly quality sports turf installation.
Just recently the Synthetic Turf Council adopted the durability and natural grass performance benchmarks of the FIFA Quality Concept. The FIFA Quality Concept was develop so players and stadium owners would have guidelines for choosing a field system that is safer for the players, performs like a natural grass stadium, saves maintenance costs and lasts for years of intense use. The Guidelines for Synthetic Turf Performance set forth by the STC, establishes the very same methods based upon proven research and is being promoted for voluntary use by field owners and their consultants.
Dr. Eric Harrison the author of the FIFA Quality Concept presented his ideas in support for and the science behind the Synthetic Turf Council’s decision to adopt these methods for the American multi-purpose sports’ market. Dr. Harrison states, “The adoption of the FIFA Quality Guidelines by the STC for synthetic turf in North America is a strong indication of the industry’s commitment toward enhancing durability and performance for all ages of athletes in many sports. FIFA leadership has strived to deliver the objectives of its guidelines through many years of education, testing and monitoring of sports surface performance around the globe and was pleased to have this forum for in-depth discussions.”
Director John Baize commented, “We firstly appreciate the support of FIFA, sponsorship by ProGrass and the many attendees who invested their time to participate. We are very pleased that so many firms are passionate about increasing true quality to our customers as evidenced by the significant amount of lively discussion. As a FIFA Preferred Provider, we appreciate the opportunity to be a catalyst for selected leaders of the synthetic turf industry to better understand and implement FIFA Quality Guidelines for the North American market. This is an important step in the industry’s effort to continually upgrade and raise the bar for athletic performance for the growing synthetic turf market.”
As a FIFA Preferred Producer for Football Turf, ACT Global is responsible for maintaining ISO 9001 Quality Standards as well as enhanced obligations in the areas of research, testing, manufacturing, construction, installation and maintenance. It is headquartered in Austin, Texas and has regional locations in The Netherlands, Cyprus, Poland, Thailand, Australia, France, The United Kingdom, Malaysia and China. Local sales and support is offered with representatives located in over 50 countries through an expanding partner network of leading sport field contractors. ACT Global Sports is notable for being the only company in the world that is a FIFA Preferred Producer for Football Turf, Synthetic Turf Council Certified Manufacturer and holds an ISO 9001 certification.
Issued by Synthetic Turf Council – 2011
1. Saves Water – A Resource in Short Supply
- According to the EPA, over one-third of residential water is used for lawn irrigation nationwide, totaling over 4 billion gallons of water a day.
- The Southern Nevada Water Authority estimates that every square foot of natural grass replaced saves an additional 55 gallons of water per year. The average lawn is 1,800 square feet, so the average home with synthetic turf saves 99,000 gallons of water each year.
- The average U.S. Household can save up to 70% on their water bill, or $500.
- Earns LEED points for Water Efficient Landscaping
2. Eliminates the use of lawn mowers
- According to the EPA, a 3.5 horsepower gas-powered lawn mower releases the same amount of air polluting emissions in one hour as a new car driven 340 miles.
- Over 17 million gallons of gas and oil are spilled each year from refueling lawn equipment; that is more oil than was spilled by the Exxon Valdez.
3. Eliminates the use of toxic pesticides and fertilizers
- The EPA has identified runoff of toxic pesticides and fertilizers as a principal cause of water pollution. Synthetic turf eliminates the need for pesticides and fertilizers.
1. Saves Water – A Resource in Short Supply
- One full-size synthetic turf sports field saves 500,000 to 1,000,000 gallons of water each year. For example, the El Paso Independent School District estimates its 10 new synthetic turf sports fields will save 80 million gallons of water each year, and $832,000 in water, mowing, repairs, and general maintenance.
- Earns LEED points for Water Efficient Landscaping
2. Recycles tens of millions of used tires annually to be used as crumb rubber infill
3. Eliminates the use of billions of pounds of toxic pesticides and fertilizers
- The EPA has identified runoff of toxic pesticides and fertilizers as a principal cause of water pollution. In Florida alone, the EPA estimates that about 1,000 miles of rivers and streams, 350,000 acres of lakes and 900 square miles of estuaries are impaired by runoff of pesticides and fertilizers.
Act Global Sports is a proud member of the Synthetic Turf Council.
Information gathered from www.syntheticturfcouncil.org
The Synthetic Turf Council (STC) hosted industry delegates from around the world in New Orleans from October 18 to 20, 2010. Record attendance was reported as the conference included educational sessions, networking opportunities, work groups and an exhibitor showcase. The STC provides an invaluable resource for companies involved in artificial turf for sports or landscaping uses.
ACT Global was represented by Sales Manager Stan Nix and Director John Baize. Stan Nix comments, “The programs and meetings were fantastic. There was something for everyone in the industry. It was another great opportunity for our industry to come together to see how we can continue developing more and more solutions to the market. It was also interesting to see the trends in our industry with turf system designs and an ever-increasing focus on sports performance. I was pleased to learn that architects, engineers and other consultants are now taking a harder look at durability and sports testing. By requiring this information during the bid process, this will push all of us in the industry to continue to get better.”
Also, our own John Baize was elected to the Board of Directors of the STC during the conference. He states, “I truly appreciate and am humbled by this honor. Our industry has an exciting future as customers around the world continue to experience the many benefits provided by synthetic grass. The STC has also grown significantly over the past several years due to the dedicated work by a lot of people that love our industry and want to help it serve the best interests of our customers. I look forward to serving the STC and invite sports field builders, consultants, synthetic lawn providers and other market participants to join this wonderful organization.”
STC certification another recognition of quality and reputation
Austin, Texas – December 2009
With synthetic turf providing numerous advantages for sports and landscaping users, the industry has grown heavily in recent years. As the demand increases, so have the number of synthetic turf manufacturers. This makes innovation, quality and integrity a key point in choosing the right producer.
ACT Global Sports was awarded the Synthetic Turf Council (STC) Certification as a Material Manufacturer and Supplier, reinforcing its place as a top manufacturer of artificial turf.
The STC’s certification program was established for customers to have assurance that the product they are receiving will exceed the STC’s quality guidelines, and that the company’s representatives will follow the STC’s code of professional and ethical code. This certification process included a due diligence review and reference check by the Synthetic Turf Council.
This recognition comes on the heels of FIFA selecting ACT Global Sports as a FIFA Preferred Producer for football turf. Additionally, the company conducts extensive sports performance research, durability and environmental testing, and follows ISO 9001 Quality methods.
John Baize, Director of ACT Global comments, “We are proud to have earned this recognition from the STC. This reflects the significant investments we make in quality and developing turf systems that go far beyond meeting carpet specifications. Our global business approach is simple – take natural grass benchmarks, develop a synthetic turf system to meet those requirements, conduct extensive UV and durability tests, and then partner with the best installation and distribution companies to deliver this quality to their clients. The users do not always see the tremendous amount of detail we put into each field, but they enjoy the quality benefits. We appreciate the STC and invite others to join this tremendous industry organization.”
ACT Global Sports is headquartered in Austin, Texas with additional tufting locations in Calhoun, Georgia, Asia and Europe. It services its international clients through offices in The Netherlands, Cyprus, China, Poland, Thailand, UK and France. Local sales and support is offered through an expanding partner network of leading sport field contractors in over 50 countries.
Issued by Synthetic Turf Council – June 2009
(New York, NY) – In response to the public’s desire for more scientific data, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and New York State Department of Health (DOH) released a new study on May 29 which validated the safety of synthetic turf fields with crumb rubber infill. The findings, available at http://www.dec.ny.gov/chemical/46856.html, concluded that “crumb rubber material used in synthetic turf fields poses no significant environmental threat to air or water quality and poses no significant health concerns.”
“This report provides compelling new scientific evidence about the safety of synthetic turf that should help answer the responsible questions being asked by parents, legislators and community activists,” said Rick Doyle, President of the Synthetic Turf Council. “Increased playability, safety, low maintenance and significant environmental benefits have made synthetic turf an increasingly popular option.”
The New York State DEC and DOH conducted a series of studies to collect laboratory and field sampling data to “assess the potential impact to both surface and ground waters due to leaching of chemicals, assess potential public health impact from air release of chemicals and evaluate surface temperature and indicators of heat stress.” Other recent findings verifying the safety of synthetic turf with crumb rubber infill include a March 2009 air quality study by the NY City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) and a May 2008 independent review of available research commissioned by DOHMH into the potential exposures and health effects due to inhalation, ingestion, and dermal absorption. These documents and more are available at - http://www.syntheticturfcouncil.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=91.
In July 2008, a U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Staff report also concluded that ‘young children are not at risk from exposure to lead [used in certain pigments to color synthetic turf fibers] in these fields.’” To further the long-term objectives of the Environmental Protection Agency, CPSC, and Centers for Disease Control to eliminate the use of lead in all products where feasible, the Synthetic Turf Council announced in July 2008 its commitment to voluntarily reduce lead levels in accordance with the same strict standards that Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008 imposes on the children’s toy industry.
Synthetic turf fields are affording millions of children and people of all ages the opportunity to be active year-round and in virtually all weather conditions. About half of all NFL teams currently play their games on synthetic turf, and it has been approved by FIFA for World Cup soccer matches. In 2008, growth in all sectors of the industry — sports fields, landscape, golf, municipal parks, and airports – also helped conserve billions of gallons of water, avoid the use of millions of pounds of pesticides and fertilizers, and recycle 25 million used tires that would otherwise end up in landfills.
Act Global Sports is a proud member of the Synthetic Turf Council.
Research Verifies Numerous Usage Benefits and Minimal Health & Environmental Risks
From the Synthetic Turf Council (USA) November 2007
These days, synthetic turf seems to be everywhere. It empowered the Barrow Whalers to become the first Arctic high school football team in northern Alaska, helped Lakeland High School in Shrub Oak, New York win the New York State Field Hockey Championship in 2006 and was even endorsed by ABC sportscasters during their November 26, 2007 broadcast of the Pittsburgh Steelers-Miami Dolphins game, when a rain-soaked layer of newly installed sod turned Heinz Field into a veritable mud pit.
The escalating need for durable fields that accommodate multiple sports teams, coupled with increasing maintenance, water usage costs and climatic shifts, have prompted a rising number of schools and parks to turn to synthetic turf to balance their program needs. Today’s synthetic turf is designed to simulate the experience of practicing and playing on a grass-like surface year round. Demand has grown to the point where over 800 multi-use synthetic turf sports fields are installed annually in North American schools, colleges, parks and professional sports stadiums. About half of all NFL teams currently play their games on synthetic turf, and it has been recently been approved for World Cup soccer matches.
As the popularity of synthetic turf escalates, so does scrutiny about its usage. Insightful and responsible questions are being asked regarding synthetic turf’s potential negative impact on the environment and health of its users. The STC acknowledges the concerns of parents, school boards, athletic directors, local officials and environmental and regulatory groups in this regard. As the industry’s trade organization, it is our responsibility to address these issues in an unbiased and judicious manner.
During the past decade, much independent, credible research about synthetic turf has been conducted worldwide, and is ongoing. Reputable governmental bodies and scientists in Norway, Sweden, Canada, Great Britain, New Jersey, California and Connecticut, international sports organizations such as FIFA (the international governing body on soccer), 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 have a negligible impact. Further, to date, no state or federal agency has banned or restricted the use of artificial turf. In fact, environmental health officials in Connecticut recently pronounced that the chemical compounds associated with the infill material from recycled rubber tires used in this technology posed no danger to human health or the environment.
Environmental Advantages of Synthetic Turf
Crumb used tire rubber has been safely utilized in synthetic turf sports fields since it was introduced in 1997, and in playgrounds and tracks for much longer. The U.S. EPA’s position is that scrap tires are not a hazardous waste, and recommends using crumb material from granulated used tires for playgrounds, running tracks, and sports fields. This decree has afforded the opportunity to recycle 25 million used auto tires per year, tires that would otherwise end up in U.S. landfills.
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. 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.
User Benefits of Synthetic Turf
Increasing demand for higher quality playing surfaces and intense competition for field accessibility have given rise to a new generation of synthetic turf systems that replicate the look and feel of manicured natural grass. Synthetic turf is supplanting its grass counterpart in record numbers because of the numerous benefits it affords, including: exponentially increased playing time, as synthetic turf can be used daily and in all types of weather, without worry of damage; improved playability, as synthetic turf fields remain uniform and consistent, season after season; increased safety, because the fields are infilled with resilient materials that provide a level of impact attenuation that is difficult to sustain on worn down, over-used natural turf fields; reduced maintenance costs; and environmental friendliness in terms of origin, application, use, disposal, sustainability and resource conservation.
In addition, while turf grass managers recommend against using a natural field for more than 20 – 24 hours per week or 680 to 816 hours per year for a three season window, synthetic turf can be utilized around 3,000 hours per year with no “rest” required.
At STC, we believe that reliable scientific data should be the foundation of any discussion regarding synthetic turf’s safety and utility. After reviewing the available research from a diverse group of third party experts, our organization is confident that the benefits of synthetic turf to players, schools, communities and the environment are documented and substantially outweigh any potential, minimal risks.
Claims of toxicity are generally based on extreme laboratory testing such as the use of solvents and high temperatures to generate pollutants. Rarely replicating actual field conditions, this laboratory work does not represent realistic material characteristics. More often than not, even with laboratory testing, results in levels of pollutants are below existing background levels within the environment. Given these facts, the environmental concerns have been deemed insignificant by third-party experts. This position is consistent with recommendations of regulating agencies and organizations, such as the U.S. EPA and FIFA, that sports fields is an acceptable use for recycled SBR tire rubber.
Individuals need to weigh the facts themselves to determine if synthetic turf best meets their needs. A collection of unfiltered, credible studies conducted by experts worldwide have been posted on our Web site (www.syntheticturfcouncil.org) for review. In addition, we have launched a Public Outreach & Education Campaign to provide answers to commonly asked questions, as well as educational materials and position papers.
About the Synthetic Turf Council
Based in Atlanta, the Synthetic Turf Council was founded in 2003 to serve as an objective resource assisting buyers and end users with the selection, use, and maintenance of synthetic turf systems in sports field, golf, and landscape applications. The organization actively collects reputable studies and research, as well as official statements by governmental agencies and sports organizations, which address the impact of synthetic turf sports fields. 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.
Act Global Sports is a proud member of the Synthetic Turf Council.
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