Sebastian Vettel who is, of course, retiring from Formula 1 at the end of the current season, has questioned the sport over simply having a “nice slogan”, with the German concerned that the sport’s sustainability goals won’t be met.
Over recent years, the 35-year-old has become a leading figure, alongside Sir Lewis Hamilton, in pushing the sport to become more environmentally friendly and sustainable, with climate change becoming an ever more increasing issue.
This year’s weather has further proven the need to tackle climate and environmental change immediately, with the likes of London having suffered huge never-seen-before forest fires.
Pakistan has recorded the complete opposite, with part of the country equivalent to the size of the United Kingdom currently underwater following record rainfall and floods.
Vettel has fought tirelessly to push the sport towards change, something the championship is seemingly starting to take notice of.
The sport is set to get rid of electric tyre warmers and become completely carbon neutral by 2030; at least that’s the supposed goal.
The sport does use sustainable fuel; however, the championship still produces one of the largest carbon footprints and produces more carbon emissions than the majority of sports on the planet.
The Aston Martin driver in a recent interview, has questioned what the sport will do if they “don’t meet” the 2030 goal, with nobody being able to tell the sport otherwise except perhaps the FIA.
“The question is what happens if they don’t meet the targets?” he asked during an interview with Auto Motor und Sport.
“Who is the controller?
“If Formula 1 controls itself, that’s a nice slogan but not particularly credible. In the end, it is important that you are also prepared to take a slice of your own profits in order to take credible steps with it.”
The recently released 2023 calendar has filled Vettel with concern that the sport is prioritising money over the environment, with next season set to see a bizarre combination of races.
Prior to the announcement, the sport’s organisers had said that they’d make the calendar more geographically friendly; however, this hasn’t happened.
The biggest calendar in the history of Formula 1 will see 24 races, with teams having to travel more than ever before.
The plan for races to be scheduled in a way to make it more manageable for teams looks to have been completely forgotten, with the likes of the Azerbaijan GP and Miami GP being a double header, despite being on different sides of the planet.
The biggest issue with the calendar is the last two races, where a double header of Las Vegas and Abu Dhabi will conclude the championship; however, to get from one to the other involves a 19-hour flight.
Teams, media companies and journalists have shared some of their frustrations on social media, with a lot of questions now surrounding whether teams and companies will have to rotate staff.
More races also mean the carbon emissions produced by F1 will further increase, with Vettel believing the sport has pushed the environment to the back of their minds.
“Formula 1 is experiencing a boom right now, also due to the Netflix series. And now people are desperate to take advantage of this boom,” complained Vettel.
“The [e-fuel] technology is already there. It’s not a new technology. Formula 1 likes to claim it is a technical pioneer. They would have been pioneers if they had unpacked it 10 years ago. But better late than never.”