In yesterday’s GSB Interview, Edgar Farrera, Director of Sustainability at Circuit Of The Americas, the brand new Formula 1 racetrack in Austin, TX, made a strong statement in support of the substantive and perceived benefits of greening the motorsports world.
While F-1 is a niche player for the hearts, minds and eyeballs of US motorsports fans, NASCAR is most certainly the behemoth. Thus it’s great to notethat NASCAR Green has been taking a lead role in bringing environmental stewardship to the fore since 2008. A piece in The Huffington Post details those efforts, from recycling to re-use of spent motor oil, which often involve NASCAR’s many corporate sponsors. The most interesting nugget from the story to me relates to the link between the corporate sponsors and NASCAR fans:
“In a 2012 study commissioned by NASCAR and conducted by Toluna, it was shown that NASCAR fans are 100 percent more likely than non-fans to view their household as very green. This number was up from 70 percent in 2011. In 2008 (when NASCAR Green started), the number of fans and non-fans who viewed their households as very green was equal.”
This week, the NASCAR Green Summit is being held in Chicago (there sure are lots of Green Sports-related and Sports-As-Force-For-Good Summits these days!) with Al Gore featured as a Keynote Speaker. I know VP Gore is from NASCAR-mad Tennessee but, really, who’da thunk he’d be keynoting a NASCAR-related green summit? It is interesting to note that NASCAR, in its Gore bio, does not mention the words “An Inconvenient Truth” at all. Here’s the part of the Gore bio where one would think they’d mention the title of the movie that won him a Nobel Peace Prize and an Oscar:
“He is the subject of an Oscar-winning documentary (WHAT’S IT CALLED???) and is the co-recipient, with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, of the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for “informing the world of the dangers posed by climate change.”
Maybe I’m nitpicking here or maybe NASCAR’s not fully evolved just yet. But it seems like they’re moving in the right direction and that’s a good thing. We will keep an eye on F-1 and NASCAR to see how it goes. And if I get text of Mr. Gore’s speech to the NASCAR Green Summit I’ll pass it along.