Vettel: F1 needs engine, calendar changes to address climate concerns

Sebastian Vettel has highlighted the changes he thinks Formula 1 must make to improve its environmental credentials, ahead of a protest by Extinction Rebellion at this weekend's Dutch Grand Prix.

Vettel: F1 needs engine, calendar changes to address climate concerns

With some controversy over F1 choosing to race near nature reserves at Zandvoort, Extinction Rebellion is planning to raise awareness of its campaign at the Dutch event on Sunday.

The group famously infiltrated the 2020 British Grand Prix at Silverstone and managed to get a barrier erected as cars completed their formation lap.

Vettel is well versed on environmental matters, being known to travel to races on trains to help minimise his carbon footprint.

Speaking ahead of the Dutch GP about what direction he believed F1 needed to go if it was to address concerns over the future, the Aston Martin driver said road relevant engines, dealing with the impact of race-day crowds and a better structured calendar were key.

"We have some fascinating technology in the cars, but it's very complex and probably irrelevant for the road," he said. "That is obviously not right.

"So I think whatever the next engine formula happens to be, it should be more road relevant, and helping everybody in the whole world to make a shift, when we talk about mobility. I think F1 should carry on along its footsteps of the past, to be a leader in technology, which is relevant for the future."

Looking at the impact of crowds, Vettel said he felt F1 could educate fans more – and the sport should think up ways of better dealing with waste at races.

"There's a lot of people coming to the events, and I think there's a huge opportunity to educate people to address certain messages to make people aware of certain things," added Vettel, who helped clear up litter after this year's British GP.

"There are a lot of people around the track that are consuming a lot of goods, drinks, food, and so on. Now, how we handle the whole topic of this, how we hand out food, drinks, etc, I think there's a lot of things that can be done on that front that can be improved.

"On our calendar, I think it could be structured in a way that it makes sense that we're not travelling back and forth for nothing, so we have races in a similar area.

"That might not suit some of the promoters to have a race at a time of year where they're not happiest, but it [a change of approach] can obviously contribute to a large amount of the emissions that we're causing."

Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin AMR21 track walk with team members

Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin AMR21 track walk with team members

Photo by: Glenn Dunbar / Motorsport Images

Vettel has said he welcomes the actions of groups like Extinction Rebellion in highlighting the environmental problems the world faces.

"We are living in a time where it is important to raise attention. And I think that's what they're doing, so I think that's good.

"If you ask me, how I would respond to what F1 is doing? I think there's a lot of things that F1 is planning to do, and some smaller things that F1 is taking action on, which is good. But is it enough? No, it's not enough.

"Is it enough, what we're doing as a society? Probably not. So I think it is vital that we understand what is at stake. And if we don't get it, then I think there is no future.

"It sounds very dark. But you know, equally on the bright side, there's a lot of things that we can do.

"And I believe there's a place for F1 in addressing the right things and making the right moves."

shares
comments
Norris' newest engine given all-clear after Spa F1 crash

Previous article

Norris' newest engine given all-clear after Spa F1 crash

Next article

Dutch GP: Hamilton tops disrupted opening practice

Dutch GP: Hamilton tops disrupted opening practice
Load comments
Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed? Prime

Can Whitmarsh appointment help Aston succeed where its F1 rivals failed?

Aston Martin owner Lawrence Stroll is determined to make the group a billion-dollar business. MARK GALLAGHER analyses his latest play – bringing former McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh into the fold

Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner Prime

Remembering Switzerland’s first F1 winner

Stepping up to F1 in 1962, Jo Siffert shone with Rob Walker Racing Team and BRM before his career was abruptly ended in a fatal crash at Brands Hatch in 1971. Kevin Turner looks back at the life of Switzerland's first F1 winner on the 50th anniversary of his death

What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat Prime

What Verstappen is risking with his current stance on 2021 F1 world title defeat

OPINION: Max Verstappen is back in the lead of the 2021 Formula 1 drivers’ championship, with the season’s final flyaway events set to get underway in the USA this weekend. But a defensive stance he’s recently adopted could have a lasting impact for the Red Bull driver when it comes to his chances of defeating Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes

Formula 1
Oct 21, 2021
The hidden Ferrari struggle that Sainz’s recent charge put to rest Prime

The hidden Ferrari struggle that Sainz’s recent charge put to rest

Despite appearing to adjust to life as a Ferrari driver with relative ease, it was far from straightforward under the surface for Carlos Sainz. But, having made breakthroughs in rather different routes at the Russian and Turkish races, he’s now targeting even greater feats for the rest of the Formula 1 season

Formula 1
Oct 20, 2021
The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team Prime

The final throes of Brazil's fleetingly successful F1 team

Emerson Fittipaldi is better remembered for his Formula 1 world championships and Indianapolis 500 successes than for the spell running his eponymous F1 team. Despite a hugely talented roll call of staff, it was a period of internal strife, limited funding and few results - as remembered by Tim Wright.

Formula 1
Oct 18, 2021
Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence Prime

Why McLaren's expanding agenda will benefit its F1 resurgence

In the 1960s and 1970s, McLaren juggled works entries in F1, sportscars and the Indy 500 while building cars for F3 and F2. Now it’s returning to its roots, expanding into IndyCars and Extreme E while continuing its F1 renaissance. There’s talk of Formula E and WEC entries too. But is this all too much, too soon? Stuart Codling talks to the man in charge.

Formula 1
Oct 17, 2021
How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential Prime

How Tsunoda plans to achieve his F1 potential

Yuki Tsunoda arrived in grand prix racing amid a whirlwind of hype, which only increased after his first race impressed the biggest wigs in Formula 1. His road since has been rocky and crash-filled, and OLEG KARPOV asks why Red Bull maintains faith in a driver who admits he isn’t really that big a fan of F1?

Formula 1
Oct 15, 2021
The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages Prime

The danger of reading too much into F1's clickbait radio messages

OPINION: After Lewis Hamilton responded to reports labelling him 'furious' with Mercedes following his heated exchanges over team radio during the Russian Grand Prix, it provided a snapshot on how Formula 1 broadcasting radio snippets can both illuminate and misrepresent the true situation

Formula 1
Oct 14, 2021