WRC: Rally Norway = Green Rally????

Tony CastaneiraAnalyst IFebruary 10, 2009

Claiming to have set an environmental standard by aiming at an emission-neutral rally the organizers of Rally Norway are challenging competitors and other organizers of the 2009 Rally Championship to join them.

Every competing team has been sent a letter explaining their environmental objective, along with a Climate Reporting form and information on how to purchase emission credits certified by the United Nations (UN).

Every participating team in the Rally Norway was invited to calculate its carbon footprint and compensate for the CO2 emissions related to the Rally Norway 2009 or the whole World Rally Championship 2009.

The organizers claim that if all teams opt in, the Norwegian Rally will have the chance to be the first ever to be completely climate neutral. The calculation includes fuel used by competing vehicles, in logistic support, and in travel.

“Rally Norway AS wants to be an eco-advocate,” affirmed Even Wiger, Rally Norway General Manager. “Critics could accuse rally sport of being an environmental delinquent, but we have a high level of environmental awareness. We want environmental respect and motor sport to go hand in hand and demonstrate this by ensuring that the 2009 event causes the least possible harm to the environment."

“Our first initiative was in 2006 when Rally Norway AS got its environmental certification. We also started to buy emission credits to compensate for the CO2 emissions produced during the event. And Rally Norway was likely to be the first WRC event called, carbon neutral. This year we want to take an important step further, developing a carbon footprint analysis of our total emissions and buying emission credits to fully compensate.”

The emission credits are issued by the UN and called CER (Certified Emission Reduction). They are a Kyoto Protocol instrument to combat global warming, called the Clean Development Mechanism and goes far beyond other environmental initiatives in the rally sports world. A CER is an official emission credit. When a CER is sold, the diminution in greenhouse gas emissions has already taken place. The resources raised then support sustainable growth in developing countries.

There is no truth to the rumor that Birkenstock has been named as the official footwear of the Rally Norway but the organizers have refused to deny the story that the final Super Special will include a group hug and singing of Kumbaya!