With Earth Week in full swing, corporations and conglomerates the world over are making the case that they have “gone green” to consumers. America’s favorite motorsport, NASCAR, even launched this 30-second commercial highlighting their eco-friendly efforts of a motorsport known for left-hand turns and high-speed crashes. Did they make the case?
I’ve covered NASCAR’s greening efforts for some time now, with some highlights including the solar-powered Poconos Raceway and switch from high-octane gasoline to E15, which has a 15% blend of American-produced ethanol. NASCAR’s other green efforts include a vast bottle and fluids recycling program, buying lots of carbon offsets, and supposedly reducing emissions by 20%. Not too shabby.
While it is certainly a step in the right direction for stock car racing, though they still have a ways to go before catching up with the likes of the American Le Mans Series. Unlike NASCAR, ALMS (which will soon merge with Grand-Am) allows teams to use a wide variety of alternative fuels, including E85, isobutonal, and natural gas. The Grand-Am series also began its own alt-fuel class, and the international motorsports foundation FIA will soon launch an all-electric Formula car series.
In my mind, NASCAR’s efforts are on the right track, but they still have a long way to go before they can claim the same green credentials as other racing series. But they still deserve a pat on the back for the effort. What do you think?