How Much Land Do All The Golf Courses In The World Take Up?

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If you have been to a golf course before, or seen them on television, then you know just how big golf courses can be. Golf courses take up lots of land to be built upon, and the surface area of each golf course can really add up.

Some people claim that there are too many golf courses, while others praise the economic, touristic and emotional benefits of golf courses to the nearby communities. Regardless, golf courses provide some benefits and downfalls, like almost everything in this world.

Therefore, as golf courses are sizeable, you may wonder: how much land do all the golf courses in the world take up? What percentage of habitable land do golf courses occupy?

In this article, we will answer those questions, and tell you exactly how much land all the golf courses in the world take up. We will show you exactly how to calculate how much land all the golf courses in the world occupy.

How Much Land Do All The Golf Courses In The World Take Up?

Considering an 18-hole golf course takes up around 160-200 acres of land, all the golf courses in the world take up roughly 5,440,960 acres of Earth’s land mass. In other words, all the golf courses in the world occupy 0.0147% of the Earth’s land surface area. Including water surfaces, golf courses take up 0.004424% of Earth’s surface area.

Golf courses are big, but how big are they all together in relation to the Earth? To arrive to a suitable answer, we can use the power of mathematics in order to generate a decent estimation.

First, we need to figure out how many golf courses there are in the world. As of 2022, there are 38,864 golf courses in the world, which add up to over 500,000 individual golf holes.

In this article, we will look at 3 calculations:

1) How much total surface area do all the golf courses in the world take up?
2) What percentage of the Earth’s land mass do all golf courses occupy?
3) What percentage of the Earth’s Total surface (including water) do all golf courses occupy?

Calculation #1: Total Surface Area Occupied By Golf Courses

An average 9-hole golf course occupies roughly 80-100 acres of land mass, while an 18-hole golf course occupies the double, roughly 160-200 acres of land mass.

There is an issue here. We do not know exactly how many 9-hole and 18-hole golf courses make up the 38,864 golf courses in the world. However, we know that golf courses across the world have an average number of 14 holes per course.

Thanks to this average of 14, we can then calculate the surface area occupied by one golf hole and multiply that number by the average number of holes on a golf course to get a good estimation of the surface area taken by the average golf course.

We proceed by calculating how well surface area one golf hole occupies, on average:

(Surface Area Occupied By 1 Hole) = (Average Surface Area Occupied By 9 Holes) / 9

(Surface Area Occupied By 1 Hole) = ((80 acres + 100 acres) / 2) / 9

(Surface Area Occupied By 1 Hole) = 10 acres per hole

We learn from the math that the average golf hole occupies 10 acres of land surface.

Considering that golf courses, on average, possess 14 golf holes, we can calculate the surface area 1 average golf course occupies:

(Surface Area Occupied By Average Golf Course) = (Surface Area Occupied By 1 Hole) * 14

(Surface Area Occupied By Average Golf Course) = (10 acres/hole) * 14 holes

(Surface Area Occupied By Average Golf Course) = 140 acres per course

We then discover that on average, golf courses across the world occupy roughly 140 acres per course.

Next, we can use the estimation of the surface area of the average golf course and multiply it by the number of golf courses in the world to calculate the total surface area in the world that is occupied by golf courses:

(Total Surface Area Occupied) = (Surface Area Average Golf Course) * (# of golf courses in the world)

(Total Surface Area Occupied) = (140 acres per course) * 38,864 golf courses

(Total Surface Area Occupied) = 5,440,960 acres

We finally arrive to our answer that around 5,440,960 acres of land surface on Earth are occupied by golf courses. In other words, golf courses occupy over 5 million acres of land on planet Earth.

Calculation #2: Percentage Of Earth’s Land Area Occupied By Golf Courses

Next, we want to calculate the percentage of Earth’s total land area that is occupied by golf courses. In this situation, we will ignore Earth’s water surfaces.

Fortunately, from Calculation #1, we already know the total surface area occupied by golf courses, so the only information we need is the total land surface of the Earth. The total surface area occupied by golf courses is 5,440,960 acres.

The total land surface area of the Earth is a number freely available online and in books. The total land surface area of the Earth is 37 billion acres. In other words, the total land surface area of Earth is 37,000,000,000 acres.

We can then calculate the percentage of this surface area that is occupied by golf courses:

(% of Earth Occupied by Golf Courses) = ((Area occupied by golf courses)/(Land on Earth)) * 100

(% of Earth Occupied By Golf Courses) = ((5,440,960)/(37,000,000,000)) * 100

(% of Earth Occupied By Golf Courses) = 0.0147 %

Therefore, we have calculated that roughly 0.0147% of the Earth’s land surface is occupied by golf courses. In other words, if you separated Earth’s total land area in 6803 equal sectors, 1 of those sectors would be filled with golf courses.

Calculation #3: Percentage Of Earth’s Total Area Occupied By Golf Courses

Finally, we want to calculate the percentage of Earth’s total area that is occupied by golf courses. In this situation, we will consider Earth’s water surfaces within the Earth’s total area.

Fortunately, from Calculation #1, we already know the total surface area occupied by golf courses, so the only information we need is the total surface area of the Earth. The total surface area occupied by golf courses is 5,440,960 acres.

The total surface area of the Earth, including water, is a number freely available online and in books. The total surface area of the Earth, including water, is 123 billion acres. In other words, the total land surface area of Earth is 123,000,000,000 acres.

We can then calculate the percentage of this total surface area that is occupied by golf courses:

(% of Earth Occupied by Golf Courses) = ((Area occupied by golf courses)/(Earth’s Surface)) * 100

(% of Earth Occupied By Golf Courses) = ((5,440,960)/(123,000,000,000)) * 100

(% of Earth Occupied By Golf Courses) = 0.004424 %

Therefore, we have calculated that roughly 0.004424% of the Earth’s total surface is occupied by golf courses. In other words, if you separated Earth’s total surface area, including oceans, in 22,604 equal sectors, 1 of those sectors would be filled with golf courses.

Conclusion

There you go! After reading this article, you have discovered how much land all the golf courses in world really take up, as well as the math behind the answer!

Are you surprised of how much space all the golf courses in the world occupy on the Earth? Do you think there are too many golf courses in the world? Let us know in the comments down below!