• Earth Day 2021: Our Journey So Far

Thursday April 22 marks Earth Day, an annual event to demonstrate support for environmental protection. First held on April 22, 1970, it now includes a wide range of events coordinated globally by EARTHDAY.ORG including 1 billion people in more than 193 countries.

Just over a year ago in March 2020, Mercedes-Benz announced a sustainable business strategy for motorsport activities and ambitious steps towards carbon neutrality. As we mark Earth Day and underline our commitment to a more sustainable future for our team and sport, we take a look at the steps we have made at the start of our journey in driving change for more sustainable racing.

Our team’s operation is now carbon neutral and we are aiming to reduce our CO2 emissions by 50 percent by 2022, compared to the baseline set in 2018.  We are working with external consultants to analyse our carbon footprint from 2019 and 2020 to maximise the opportunities available to achieve this aim.

Our factory in Brackley uses renewably sourced energy to power all its operation. And both our Formula One and Formula E teams have achieved Three Star Accreditation, the highest level of certification in the FIA’s flagship Environmental Accreditation Programme, which aims to help motorsport stakeholders to measure and enhance their environmental performance.

We are also in the process of identifying the most appropriate gold-standard carbon offsetting solution for all unavoidable CO2 emissions. And where possible, hybrid vehicles are being used for travelling Team members. 

We’ve managed to remove just under 3,000kg from our air freight, and reuseable drinks bottles have been distributed to all employees, both trackside to support Formula One’s ban on single use drinks bottles, and at our factory.

Single-use plastic has largely been removed from our factory canteen and trackside hospitality areas, with the exception of a few areas where it has had to be reinstated due to COVID safety measures; we plan to remove them again later this year when restrictions are lifted.

Alongside those sustainability projects, our F1 Power Unit continues to be a development laboratory for hybrid technology – which is trickling down to the road car industry more and more.

For example, an electric exhaust gas turbocharger has been developed for use in Mercedes-AMG high-performance cars and uses know-how and tech from F1’s ERS and MGU-H systems.

We’ve made some good progress over the past 12 months, but there’s still a long way to go on our journey to become a more sustainable team and sport. We’ll keep you updated on our progress.