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Chris Nixon is Media Manager for Kennards Hire Rally Australia.
|(25/10/2013) RALLY Australia has become the first motorsport event in the world to achieve the top level of accreditation from the FIA Institute’s sustainability programme.
The event was awarded with Achievement of Excellence – the best of three levels in the Environmental Certification Framework.
Coates Hire Rally Australia, Round 10 of the 2013 FIA World Rally Championship, was staged on the New South Wales Coffs Coast on 12-15 September. The event will return to the Coffs Coast on 11-14 September next year.
FIA Institute President Gérard Saillant said: “I congratulate Rally Australia and the organising team behind it on this important achievement. We look forward to continued collaboration and to helping them achieve future environmental objectives.”
Rally Australia Chairman Ben Rainsford said: “Rally Australia is extremely proud to be recognised by the FIA Institute.
“We are fortunate to stage the WRC event in a coastal region of New South Wales, with uniquely-beautiful natural features and a rich array of native flora and fauna and therefore comprehensive environmental measures had to be fundamental to our event plan.
“Being able to host Rally Australia in a sustainable way ensures there are no environmental obstacles to the WRC returning year after year.”
In 2009, the event turned around negative perceptions of the environmental effects of the rallying and has increased support from government and locals. This was achieved by developing a culture and direction within all aspects of the event.
Rally Australia Sustainability and Environment Manager Colin Trinder developed a comprehensive environmental policy as well as management and assessment tools. The net effect of these measures in 2013 ensured that there were no environmental incidents.
Community members, spectators and competitors were encouraged to follow environmentally-friendly practices throughout the event and a programme is in place to achieve total carbon neutrality by the end of 2013.
The FIA Institute assessment team noted a strong environmental commitment throughout the organisation, from board-level and senior management, to marshals, stewards and volunteers. The event showed that it is planned and executed to ensure a high level of environmental performance, demonstrating the strong commitment to sustainability. There was also a range of impressive documentation available, such as a separate Sustainability and Environmental protection manual for marshals.
The FIA Institute’s Environmental Accreditation Scheme is a targeted programme to improve sustainability across motor sport worldwide. It provides an environmental management framework that stakeholders can engage in and offers incentives for them to advance their environmental performance.
This initiative builds on the FIA and FIA Institute’s commitment to environmental innovation and excellence already established through the development of eco-relevant sporting regulations and automotive policy work. The FIA and FIA Institute will continue to collaborate in this area going forward to ensure improvements in the sustainability of motor sport around the world.
The FIA’s work on sustainability in motor sport, undertaken in collaboration with Michelin, is focused on a Life Cycle Assessment and this assessment together with the Institute Sustainability programme will form the basis of the FIA’s environmental strategy across all areas of motor sport.
The Sustainability Programme has three levels of progress – Commitment to Excellence, Progress towards Excellence and Achievement of Excellence.
Where a stakeholder meets the minimum criteria expected for the programme.
2. Progress (towards Excellence)
Where a stakeholder demonstrates clear progress across the range of criteria for the programme.
3. Achievement (of Excellence)
Where a stakeholder meets best practice in every area of the programme.
For further information: www.fiainstitute.com.
Comprehensive information on Rally Australia’s Environmental and Sustainability Program is available at www.rallyaustralia.com.au/environment.