Friday, October 8, 2021
Sustainable Fuel Ideas
Formula 1 wants to make road traffic green
In five years’ time, Formula 1 wants to use 100 percent sustainable fuel. Even better: it can be used not only for racing cars, but also in road traffic. However, the Motorsport Premier Class also thwarted its commitment to a better environment.
Sebastian Vettel has long earned the reputation of a Formula 1 critic – mind you, as an active driver. The four-time world champion was heavily criticized for alleged hypocrisy, but one of Heppenheimer’s key demands, calls for more “relevance” to road traffic, has apparently been answered by the racing series.
Until cheaper and simpler engines are introduced, Formula 1 wants to develop a fuel that is not only 100 percent sustainable, but can also be used “in every series vehicle with a combustion engine”. The series announced this ambitious plan.
Greenhouse gas emissions from this fuel should be reduced by “at least 65 percent” compared to fossil gasoline. This should be made possible through, among other things, the binding and utilization of CO2 or the use of non-food biomass (algae, agricultural waste and inedible plants) in production.
Formula 1’s technical director, Pat Symonds, explained, the procedures, however, are still “very, very experimental”, and so far they are in the early stages of the pilot phase. Still: if the project is successful – in collaboration with several oil companies operating in Formula 1 – it will be a coup. Especially since the dominant class has calculated that by 2030, more than 90 percent of cars worldwide will still be powered by an internal combustion engine.
Itinerary defies ambitions
Despite its ambitious goal of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2030, the here and now, the Motorsport Premier Class still offers plenty of open ground. The planned calendar for 2022 is particularly troubling. 23 races are planned within eight months in Europe, Asia, Australia and North and South America. Among other things, the route includes stops in Saudi Arabia, Australia, China, the US and Spain in the spring. From Monaco it travels from Azerbaijan to Canada and from there to Great Britain in early summer.
This does not seem sustainable, with Vettel speaking out recently in favor of a calendar that is more regionally planned, among other things. But as it is, Formula 1 must once again be accused of following the money trail. This is at the expense of the environment and the many employees of the Grand Prix Circus who are busy with assembly and dismantling and cannot even go home for a short period of time, unlike the drivers – which usually happens by plane.
“The goal should be to make our weather sustainable not only for the environment, but also for the employees,” Vettel said on the sidelines of the Turkish Grand Prix on Thursday (Sunday, 2:00 pm CEST/SKY): “It should be like this People should also live a normal life, live for their families. We have to be very careful.”
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