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Racing towards sustainability: NASCAR sets bold carbon offsetting goal

NASCAR's new impact platform, NASCAR IMPACT, aims to reduce the organisation's carbon footprint to zero by 2035. The long-term carbon emissions goal marks a new era in sustainability for America's top motorsport and follows the completion of the first comprehensive measurement of NASCAR's carbon footprint. 

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The measurement included total emissions from all NASCAR offices, owned race tracks, national series races, and other related operations in 2022. NASCAR IMPACT features sustainability, community engagement, and other social initiatives, reflecting its commitment to improving the wellbeing of communities and the planet's health.

Riley Nelson, NASCAR's Head of Sustainability, said, ‘Measuring our carbon footprint will become an annual process, and as we improve year-over-year with the support of the industry, we'll identify new ways to contribute to a cleaner and healthier environment.’

Measure your impact: calculate your carbon footprint

NASCAR's commitment to reducing its carbon footprint to zero by 2035 is accompanied by a focus on near-term sustainability goals informed by the measurement of its carbon footprint. These goals include 100% renewable electricity at owned race tracks and facilities, sustainable racing fuel development, expanded recycling efforts, and on-site electric vehicle (EV) charging stations. Its Chief Communications & Impact Officer, Eric Nyquist, acknowledges that there is still much work to be done but affirms that the fundamental objective is clear: to reduce emissions over time.

To track its progress towards sustainability goals, NASCAR will annually publish the NASCAR IMPACT Report. The report will measure the collective impact of various functions, including the NASCAR Foundation, diversity, equity and inclusion, STEM education, supplier diversity, and national partnerships with organisations like Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Read more: Green infrastructure: how nature can improve urban living

In celebration of its 75th anniversary season, the NASCAR Foundation will host a 75-hour ‘giveathon’ from 16–19 May to raise $750,000 for over 500 non-profit organisations across the country. Additionally, NASCAR achieved a 90.1% waste diversion rate at the 2023 Busch Light Clash at the LA Memorial Coliseum, making it the sport's first zero-waste event. This was made possible with the support of the University of Southern California and the coliseum’s staff. NASCAR also became the first global sports property to join the Clean Energy Buyers Association (CEBA), which consists of more than 350 energy customer companies and their partners.

NASCAR's recent emphasis on community involvement goes hand in hand with its sustainability initiatives. Its executives are optimistic about expanding its environmental efforts. According to Nyquist, ‘Through NASCAR IMPACT, we aim to set a new benchmark for sustainability and overall social responsibility. NASCAR has a significant responsibility to promote the welfare of our society and the betterment of our planet, and our dedication showcases that.’

Explore how leading companies are achieving net zero

Today, it is more important than ever to prioritise sustainability in all aspects of our lives, including in the world of sports. NASCAR's commitment to achieving net-zero operating emissions by 2035 through the NASCAR IMPACT platform sets a powerful example for other sports organisations and businesses. At DGB Group, we believe that by steering innovation towards sustainable practices, we can build a better future for all, where we can enjoy the excitement of motorsports while also protecting the planet we call home.

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