The green movement has altered industries like fashion
and package design
, but the usually staid sports industry is hardly seen as being eco-conscious. In fact, major sporting events and venues are notorious for being among the most efficient guzzlers of energy, and largest producers of waste and pollution, on the planet. However, from tracks to slopes, it seems that we’re on the brink of change when it comes to environmental responsibility in athletic disciplines
Electric Vehicle Races:
Race cars are known to produce plumes of exhaust fumes, but these ozone killers could soon be replaced by the hushed purr of electric vehicles. Launching its inaugural season
this year, the EV Cup
will race only zero-emission electric cars, becoming the world’s first “green” motor-racing series. Two principal race series boast distinct classes of vehicles—the City EV class, in which drivers will compete in carbon-free, race-prepared, THINK City
cars; and the Sports EV class, which will feature teams racing 185-KPH Westfield iRacers
. A third category, the Prototype EV class, will showcase the latest non-production electric vehicles in a time-trial format. One question remains: will the hot dogs served at the concession stand be made from grass-fed beef?
Fans may be anticipating Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick’s appearance on Oprah
this week, but backing his redemption isn’t the only way the team is earning good graces lately, as owner Jeffrey Lurie is transforming Lincoln Financial Field
into the first major U.S. sports facility to be self-sufficient on renewable fuel. With completion anticipated by next season’s NFL opener, the project includes 80 wind turbines fixed along the stadium’s upper rim; 2,500 solar panels attached to an overhang and facade; and a 7.6-megawatt biodiesel-reliant power plant in the parking lot. Already, almost all materials used at the stadium can be recycled or repurposed. Even the beer cups, made of corn-based plastic, go into a compost pile. Go green, indeed.
Carbon-Neutral Ski Holiday:
Is “soft mobility” the new slow movement? If Alpine Pearls
, a new organization promoting sustainable tourism in the Alps has its way, it may be leading the next wave of eco trends. Part of the AP alliance, Austrian ski town Werfenweng
is at the forefront of this new approach
to winter vacations. One of only two places in the Alps to offer carbon-neutral holidays, Werfenweng’s soft mobility (a.k.a., Sanfte Mobilität, or SAMO
) program encourages tourists to relinquish their cars in exchange for a network of transportation alternatives. A branded SAMO card offers access to a shared local taxi service, buses that connect to nearby mountains, and use of equipment for cross-country skiing, snow-shoeing, and tobogganing—all for free.