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Environment and Conservation to Unveil Electric Golf Equipment at the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay

Monday, May 20, 2013 | 08:42am

Maintenance Equipment Will Save Taxpayer Dollars, Benefit the Environment and Improve Golfing Experience

CHATTANOOGA – Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation Commissioner Bob Martineau and Deputy Commissioner Brock Hill will unveil the new electric golf course equipment at the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay Golf Course on Tuesday, May 21, beginning at noon.  The event is designed to showcase the new maintenance equipment, while demonstrating its positive environmental impacts and energy savings, among other benefits. Attendees will include members of the community, golfing enthusiasts, power industry representatives, equipment manufacturers and local park supporters.

Using funds provided by the Clean Tennessee Energy Grant program, the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay replaced gasoline-powered golf course equipment with battery-powered options including greens and approach mowers, bunker rakes, greens rollers, and utility vehicles.   Equipment manufacturers represented at the event will include Jacobsen, Smithco, Tru Turf, Toro Workman and Club Car. 

Overall, the new equipment will provide an estimated 300 percent decrease in annual operating expenses and a 30 percent reduction in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.  Coupled with the overall economic and environmental benefits, the electric equipment is virtually silent when it operates, minimizing noise that could disturb both golfers and wildlife.  Additionally, there are no fluids to manage, such as hydraulic or other automotive fluids, reducing potential impacts to vegetation and ground water, while also reducing staff resources. 

"This initiative is the first of its kind at a Tennessee State Parks golf course and we are thrilled to support the electric equipment initiative with funds from the Clean Tennessee Energy Grant program," said Martineau.  "The project exemplifies the environmental protection, fiscal soundness, and community benefits that are at the heart of sustainability."



TDEC Commissioner Bob Martineau

TDEC Deputy Commissioner Brock Hill, Parks and Conservation

Mike Nixon, Director of Golf Operations for Tennessee State Parks

Lori Munkeboe, Director of TDEC’s Office of Sustainable Practices

Don Campbell, Harrison Bay State Park Manager

Paul Carter, Golf Course Superintendent for Tennessee State Parks

Members of the community, golf enthusiasts and local elected officials



Official unveiling of the new electric golf equipment at the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay Golf Course.  



Tuesday, May 21, 2013 (Please note that all times are Eastern)

  • Noon to 1 p.m. – Equipment demonstration and brief Q&A with TDEC leadership and equipment manufacturers
  • 1 p.m. – Media availability will include remarks by Commissioner Martineau, Deputy Commissioner Hill, Director of Golf Operations Mike Nixon and Golf Course Superintendent Paul Carter. 



The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay

8919 Harrison Bay Road

Harrison, Tennessee 37341


With more than 2,900 employees working across the state, the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation is a diverse and dynamic department, serving the state by (1) safeguarding the health and safety of Tennessee citizens from environmental hazards; (2) protecting and improving the quality of Tennessee's land, air and water; and (3) managing Tennessee’s 54 state parks, 83 natural areas and a variety of historical or archaeological sites.  For more information about the department, please visit

As part of Harrison Bay State Park, the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay is considered a true classic course, designed by Jack Nicklaus. Located approximately 20 minutes north of downtown Chattanooga, the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay is surrounded by both water and heavily-wooded land, creating an ideal setting for the course. Referred to as "the best natural piece of land for a golf course," the Bear Trace at Harrison Bay features Bermuda fairways lined with soaring pine and hardwood trees. Fairway and green side bunkers are designed in the traditional Nicklaus fashion and add notable character to the overall integrity of the course. Like other courses in the collection, the emphasis on playability is clearly evident. The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay stretches from 7,140 yards (gold tees) to just under 5,300 yards (red tees).  For more information about the park and golf course, please visit  


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