Sustainabilty and Ford’s WRC programme

Ford’s achievements in reducing the environmental impact of its WRC programme


By Franck Drui

25 March 2010 - 15:05
Sustainabilty and Ford's WRC (...)

Ford of Europe’s FIA World Rally Championship programme has benefited from detailed research and test work to reduce its environmental impact, as part of the company’s commitment to take a leading role within the motor industry in addressing sustainability issues.

Ford and rally partner M-Sport identified key areas on the record-breaking Focus RS World Rally Car in which the BP Ford Abu Dhabi World Rally Team could manage its environmental, economic and social impact. These range from engine parts and wheels to paintwork and fire extinguishers.

The team’s strategy supports Ford’s approach to environmental issues with its road vehicles, which is guided by its Product Sustainability Index. This scores the impact of vehicles in eight areas, including the key elements of:

- the use of sustainable materials (recycled and renewable materials)
- substance management (including allergy-tested interiors)
- life cycle global warming potential (mainly carbon dioxide emissions)
- life cycle air quality potential (other air emissions)

Ford of Europe motorsport chief Gerard Quinn said 17 key areas of the Focus RS WRC were identified in which parts could be recycled, or in which increased efficiency and ’greener’ materials helped to reduce the environmental impact.

"We conducted a comprehensive environmental audit to identify ways in which we could better manage our impact. As a result the team undertook research and test work, with the help of our technical partners, and we’re delighted with the wide range of areas in which we have been able to lessen our impact," said Quinn.

"Gearbox components, aluminium and steel engine parts, brake discs and wheel rims can all be recycled at the end of their competition lives while the use of water-based paints and inks on the car’s paintwork and graphics reduces the use of hazardous materials.

"We have also worked closely with our partners, the FIA and rally organisers to reduce CO2 emissions. We analysed the team’s CO2 impact during the past three seasons in key areas such as air travel, rally car fuel and shipping and set reduction targets for the following season. This is a continuing process," added Quinn.

A large graphic highlighting the 17 key areas will be a feature of the team’s hospitality unit on all short-haul WRC rounds from the Jordan Rally (1 - 3 April) onwards.

Ford’s environmental measures in the WRC received support from Jean Todt, President of motorsport’s governing body, the FIA, which is heading an international campaign aimed at reducing the impact of motoring on the planet – Make Cars Green.

"Make Cars Green aims to encourage a radical rethink in the way cars are considered in society by being at the forefront of encouraging considerate and ecologically sound mobility. That policy extends to motorsport. We recognise that motorsport has an important part to play in the development of new technologies both environmentally and in safety and we welcome Ford’s efforts to positively address sustainability issues," he said.


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