Aston Martin F1 driver Sebastian Vettel has defended himself for calling for more action against climate change after some critics accused him of hypocrisy.
The four-time World Champion recently revealed that he plans to vote green in elections, prompting criticism from some who suggested it is hypocritical for him to campaign against climate change as Formula 1 is far from eco-friendly.
Responding to this, a defiant Vettel said he will continue to try to “inspire” people to take action and said that having children has made him more concerned about the environment and making the earth a more sustainable place to live.
“I’m not a politician. It’s not my topic, it’s a topic that concerns us all,” Vettel said this week.
“Of course, it’s important to me, including my own family.
“With children, you have a different relationship to the future and to the time. That’s why it would be nice if I can inspire other people to just think about it.”
Continuing, the German said climate change is a topic that cannot be ignored, and he directly addressed the criticism he recently received.
“The subject of change, of the climate crisis, concerns us all,” Vettel asserted.
“Of course, I also see it in the same way that motorsport is not leading the way as a showcase model and is not known for it, and I think it’s good when people ask very critically ‘does that even fit?’
“But I think it is a question we – not only in motorsport but in all other areas as well – have to ask ourselves more and more. It is a topic we cannot ignore. There is no alternative.
“It’s not that we can say ‘we’ll take care of something else first’. It is very important that everyone understands the urgency of how the world is changing so that future generations, but also ourselves, can continue to shape life as sweet as we know it and as freely as we know it.
“We just have to look at each other and be careful. If we don’t do that, it won’t be so nice for all of us. Then there will be real and serious problems.
“I think the sooner we seriously take care of it, including doing it, the better our future will be,” he concluded.
Other F1 drivers – most notably Sir Lewis Hamilton – have also been criticised for eco campaigning and trying to make the earth more sustainable.