Climate Action Offsetter: SRO Motorsports races toward their climate goals

June 26, 2023

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Q&A with SRO Motorsports Group, who recently retired offsets from the Reserve offset registry

1. What is your organization’s mission?

With three decades’ experience in organization and promotion of motorsport races around the world, SRO Motorsports Group is the established global leader in GT racing. We stage multiple series across five continents, each with a unique identity, providing an opportunity to GT teams to compete for diverse categories titles. One of our flagship events sees world-leading automotive brands tackle marquee events across the globe.

The company is inextricably linked with the revival of GT Racing, but has also been involved in single-seater, sportscar and touring car competitions as well as in the promotion of multi-series platforms and esports competitions.

Considerable emphasis is placed on amateur competitors thanks to a range of series combining a relaxed environment with highly professional standards, and SRO also works with the FIA to organise and promote the FIA Motorsport Games, a multi-disciplinary event in which drivers compete in the colors of their national flag.

Our events portfolio is constantly expanding, we are on a mission to build a sustainable future for our sport, through teamwork, innovation and a rebellious competitive spirit.

2. What are the key principles and goals of your sustainability program?

SRO’s sustainability strategy has our business at the core of it. From renewable energy procurement at our facilities, to reducing, recycling waste and obtaining environmental certifications, we are truly focused on bringing environmental protection as a crucial focus to our day-to-day work.

The topics of diversity and inclusion, as well as our employees’ health and wellbeing are equally high on our list of priorities. We’ll continue to work on and implement inclusive working and hiring practices, as well as establish well-being and health and safety policies, aiding us in shaping a diverse and empowered workforce. This will help SRO become a stronger, more resilient business and a better place to work.

Our championships are where our strategy house further develops, establishing three main pillars: events, teams and partners, and elaborating environmental actions within.

Regarding the events pillar, this is the second year in which single-use plastic is banned on all our events, and we cooperate with suppliers which offer sustainable products (catering, merchandise, branding materials etc). We have recently mandated compulsory use of 100% HVO (bio) fuel for team generators and tyre warmers at our biggest European Series events and the goal is to implement this rule worldwide in the upcoming years.

The teams participating in all of SRO Series around the world, are with no doubt our biggest driving force. Being one of the main pillars in our sustainability strategy, we’ve pledged to empower our teams to go carbon neutral and champion diverse talent.

At the end of this racing season we’ll provide our teams with best practice guidance on decarbonization and a GHG assessment calculator to allow them to work out their emissions and how to cut them. For two years in a row now we’ve compensated our competitors carbon emissions by supporting international environmental projects, having in that way 100% carbon neutral competitor fleets.

The third main pillar of our strategy focuses on creating innovative partnerships for zero carbon fuels and sustainable tyres.

Adopting sustainable race fuels is a top priority, and we plan to partner with innovators in fuels to give us all the power we need, with 60% lower CO2 emissions by 2024, and zero CO2 by 2030.

Sustainable tyre design and use is the second aim of our partner pillar. As of this year we have implemented 100 percent tyre collection and recovery processes of used tyres on our events. Our tyre partnership work will additionally focus on implementation of tyre circularity programme to maximise used tyres upcycling as of 2024 and continuous demand for more sustainable design creating tyres that last longer.

3. How did you choose the right offset projects for your company?

Each of the offset projects we invest in are carefully selected and verified by relevant environmental certification standards. They support the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and are subject to regular third-party audits. To encourage carbon emissions removal and carbon avoidance, a balance of technology-based and nature-based initiatives is reflected in our offsetting portfolio. We also try to choose projects which are relevant to our racing activities, meaning supporting projects local to some of the regions we race in. By supporting these initiatives, we are establishing a global environmental presence that matches our activities in motor racing.

4. How has utilizing offsets benefited your organization / your clients / your community?

SRO Motorsports Group is committed to manage our business processes while taking account of our environmental, social and economic impact. Our constant priority is to act in a responsible and ethical manner, always striving to bring positive contribution to society.

A crucial part of our wider CSR commitment is our Environmental responsibility – being highly aware of the environmental footprint our operations create, we have created a 2023 sustainability program and constantly implement sustainable actions into each aspect of our business activities.

As part of our sustainability program, SRO has started to offset its residual carbon emissions, difficult to be avoided at present. These offsetting programs contribute towards preserving biological diversity and protecting endangered ecosystems, successfully combating climate change. The environmental projects we support bring numerous benefits for us, our community and the society as a whole by helping reduce millions tonnes of CO2e, restoring eco-systems, supporting traditional livelihoods and offering locals a more sustainable source of income.

5. What’s next for your organization’s climate and environmental goals?

SRO Motorsports Group has recently joined The Climate Pledge, an initiative co-founded by Amazon and Global Optimism, which is a commitment to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2040.

This ambitious target is 10 years ahead of the objective set by the Paris Agreement, a landmark treaty adopted at the COP 21 UN Climate Change Conference in 2015. Meeting the goal will further enhance the world’s chances of limiting the global temperature rise and in turn fighting back against the climate emergency.

By joining, SRO has committed to three main areas of action: measuring and reporting its greenhouse gas emissions on a regular basis; implementing decarbonisation strategies in line with the Paris Agreement; and acting to neutralize any remaining emissions with additional, quantifiable, real, permanent, and socially beneficial offsets to achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2040. Crucially, the initiative acknowledges that the world must move faster in its effort to build a low-carbon future.

In addition, we have set several environmental goals and actions for 2024: implementing 100% HVO racing fuel on our events, sustainable racing calendars, obtaining environmental certifications for our Series and facilities, holding environmental workshops for our competitors, awarding competitor Sustainability trophies and we also aim to recalculate our carbon footprint baseline.

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