At the U.S. Department of Energy display at the Washington D.C. auto show, Baltimore Grand Prix president Jay Davidson announced a strategy for the event aimed at making the American Le Mans Series and IZOD IndyCar Series doubleheader street racing weekend, scheduled for Sept. 2-4, the most sustainable racing event in the U.S.
Davidson indicated that the strategy has made the Baltimore GP attractive not only to corporate partners but has created a lot of goodwill in the community as well. Among the sustainability elements were the customary recycling, composting, public transportation initiatives, but Davidson indicated the BGP has taken some additional steps that should allow the event to achieve its goals over the next five years.Other initiatives include:
• Creating a Green Improvement Zone that will concentrate on putting solar panels on the Baltimore Convention Center; replacing LED street lights with solar lighting; replacing steel light poles with aluminum ones; and creating charging stations for electric vehicles (EV) and hybrid electric vehicles (HEV)
• Using hybrid vehicles to transport fans
• Developing a system for cleaner runoff from the city streets, including the possible use of bio-swales
• Bundling parking by ticket holder zip codes, eliminating the fans' arduous and energy wasteful search for parking
• Retaining a world class arborist, Scott Rykiel (Mahan Rykiel Associates), regarding a vegetation and tree regeneration program
• Developing a “green team” of local corporations such as Constellation Energy and Under Armour who have taken sustainability leadership positions in other Baltimore events
• Engaging Strategic Services International (SSI) that affiliated with a carbon “war room” in association with the U.S. Department of Energy to find ways for companies to become carbon neutral.