Jonny Cooper and Phil Egginton, joint CEOs of the Low Carbon Motorsport Initiative (LCMI), took centre stage at a major gathering of sustainable transport technology thought leaders, held in Cheltenham UK on the 8th and 9th September. Saturday saw seminars by Vince Cable MP and Iain Gray, Chief Executive of the Technology Strategy Board. On the second day, Jonny chaired a forum on the future of motorsport, featuring on its panel Sergio Rinland, legendary F1 designer, and others including Dr Anthony Thompson from Qualcomm Halo and Nick Carpenter from Delta Motorsports. Phil Egginton led the debate around the need to drive low-carbon behaviours across all aspects of motorsport design and operation, and not simply focus on turning drivetrains electric.

The background to the Low Carbon Motorsport Initiative

  • There is a global revolution in automotive production, moving rapidly towards hybrid and full electric vehicles. Motorsport is now at best a follower, rather than a technology leader.
  • There are currently (September 2012) a handful of EV racing proposals and isolated international-level hybrid/KERS racers, most of which are considering only the issue of tailpipe emissions, without measuring the whole life-cycle impact of the vehicle design and operation.
  • There is a danger of traditional ICE-powered racing vehicles being seen as increasingly environmentally unacceptable, threatening the future of the sport.
  • Yet, there is an opportunity for motorsport to play a significant role in adopting sustainable technology and processes across every aspect of vehicle design, operation and end-of-life disposal.
  • However, the vast majority of motorsport stakeholders have a substantial emotional and financial investment in ICE-powered competition.

The objectives of the Low Carbon Motorsport Initiative

  1. To drive whole life-cycle low-carbon technology and processes into mass-motorsport.
  2. To encourage development of technology which can be transferable to the wider automotive industry
  3. To create an eco-positive public image of the sport across all disciplines

The methodology of the Low Carbon Motorsport Initiatve

  1. Deliver a green awards scheme which recognises carbon-reduction behaviour and confers financial and performance advantages to successful participants.
  2. Use online and offline media to promote the LCMI, and to engage with all stakeholders, including sponsors, drivers, team owners, circuit operators, race organisers, governing bodies, car and component manufacturers, spectators, marshals, journalists and commentators.
  3. Encourage open innovation by all stakeholders to share best practice in the development of green technology and processes.
  4. Identify commercial and other stakeholders to sponsor and fund activity throughout the LCMI.
  5. Provide consultancy and carbon-output assessment services to stakeholders wishing to drive improvement into their green technology and processes.

Do you think the future of Motorsport is Green?

Find out more about the low carbon motorsport initiative, learn about the different technological advances and industrial processes powering this potentially global niche by visiting us online.


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