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
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Prime

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences.

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Prime

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Prime

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Prime

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1's elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he's recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix driver ratings Prime

Italian Grand Prix driver ratings

Two drivers produced faultless performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left many to rue what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Prime

Why Ricciardo would have won without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates Prime

Why Italian GP success is on for McLaren even if Verstappen dominates

For the second time in 2021, McLaren will line up for the start of a grand prix from the first row. It knows it has the chance of "glory" if things go well for Daniel Ricciardo and Lando Norris at the start of the 2021 Italian Grand Prix, but even if they just maintain their grid positions, signs from the rest of the Monza weekend suggest success is very possible for Formula 1's other orange army

Formula 1
Sep 12, 2021