Vettel’s climate crusade ’authentic’ - Rosberg
"It is commendable that he is so committed in this area"
Sebastian Vettel’s environmental crusading is "commendable", according to fellow Formula 1 world champion and German Nico Rosberg.
Quadruple title winner Vettel has been called a hypocrite for advocating so stridently for action against climate change and other environmental issues whilst also racing in fuel-guzzling F1.
Indeed, after speaking out against the "climate crime" of "mining tar sands" in Canada recently, Alberta energy minister Sonya Savage pointed out Vettel’s hypocrisy as a F1 driver "with financing from Saudi Aramco".
And it now emerges that Saudi Arabia is expanding its influence at Vettel’s F1 employer, Aston Martin, even further.
The Financial Times reports that the Lawrence Stroll-owned British carmaker will benefit from some $775 million by selling 16.7 percent to Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund.
Stroll said the deal is to "deal with the God-damned debt".
According to 2016 world champion Rosberg, however, Vettel is still able to speak out about environmental issues despite the charges of hypocrisy.
"I would have expected that it would be impossible to convey his messages to people with credibility," the retired Mercedes driver told Eurosport.
"But Sebastian does it with the deepest conviction and I think that’s very nice."
Of course, Rosberg acknowledged the apparent hypocrisy of Vettel’s situation.
"Racing involves a conflict," he said. "On the one hand, he is emotionally bound in the fight to support the environment with many actions.
"On the other, he himself contributes to climate change with his travelling and the burning of fuel. And he would like to pursue this passion for a few more years.
"But I still think it is commendable that he is so committed in this area, and it comes across as authentic," Rosberg added.
"Giving up your greatest passion would be asking a lot of him. But if he is committed to the fight against climate change and keeps going at the same time, for me that’s fine."
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