Envision Virgin team partners with climate change campaign - The Race
Formula E

Envision Virgin team partners with climate change campaign

Jan 14 2021
By Sam Smith

Race-winning Formula E team Envision Virgin Racing has announced a partnership with the COP26 ‘Together for Our Planet’ campaign to encourage global action against climate change.

Currently the only carbon-neutral team in the electric Formula E series, Envision Virgin is also aiming to encourage the acceleration to zero emission vehicles for all road users.

The Silverstone-based squad, owned by global green tech company Envision Group, will run the ‘Together for Our Planet’ messaging on both Robin Frijns and Nick Cassidy this season, beginning next month at the season opener in Diriyah.

This year’s COP, the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference, aims to bring together world leaders to commit to urgent climate action. One of the key themes of this year’s event, held in Glasgow on November 1-12, is to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) and the UK’s own pledge to decarbonise transport and reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Envision Virgin UN COP26 Formula E car

Central to this is the phase-out date for new petrol and diesel cars and vans, which the government has brought forward from 2040 to 2030. This will ultimately see all new cars and vans being fully zero emission at the tailpipe from 2030.

To aid this transition and help inspire positive climate action around the world, Envision Virgin Racing will be partnering with COP26’s Together for Our Planet campaign on several key initiatives across the year under the race team’s ‘Race Against Climate Change’ sustainability programme.

These include a series of digital events in the run up to COP26, a children’s competition to design an environmentally inspired race suit to be worn by the team’s drivers, plus activities at the Formula E race locations around the world.

“Through the exciting platform of motorsport, we’re able to showcase the true potential of electric vehicles as we compete in cities across the globe, developing innovative technology that will filter from the track to the road and accelerating the adoption of EVs,” said Envision Virgin managing director, Sylvain Filippi.

“Now, after just a few seasons of competition, we are seeing the impact of this with global EV sales rising from 330,000 from when the championship first began to 2.17million in 2019. Even during the bleakest of economic times, sales rose 185% last year in the UK alone and EVs have outsold petrol and diesel cars in Norway, for example, showing that EVs are about to become mainstream and play a key role in reducing carbon emissions.”

Franz Jung, vice president of Envision Group and chairman of the board at Envision Virgin Racing, added: “As with Envision Group, the team has sustainability running through its DNA, so we are fully supportive of this initiative.

“As well as being certified carbon neutral, we were also the first motorsport team to sign the UN’s Framework Convention on Climate Change and are one of just a handful of teams to have achieved the FIA’s [governing sporting body] three-star environmental accreditation.” For more information on COP26 and Together for Our Planet, visit together-for-our-planet.ukcop26.org.

Robin Frijns and Nick Cassidy, Envision Virgin, Formula E testing

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