In yet another sustainable step forward for NASCAR, the racing organization has just gained the first entry in its new “green” sponsor category. Liberty Tire Recycling has been tapped as the official tire recycler of the MAKE #50 Motorsports Chevy Silverado race team, in the Camping World Truck Series.
The high visibility green sponsorships are just the latest forward-thinking move for NASCAR, which is emerging as an important force in the mainstreaming of recycling, conservation, toxic chemicals reduction, renewable energy, and other key sustainability concepts.
Tire Recycling, Lots of Tire Recycling
The tire recycling market is burgeoning, with Liberty Tire Recycling alone accounting for about 110 million tires yearly, which translates into about 1.5 billion pounds of recycled rubber. In addition to recycling used tires as industrial fuel (one of the more conventional uses), Liberty is making forays into re-using rubber crumb in molded rubber products, landscaping, and play surfaces.
NASCAR and Sustainability
As for NASCAR, moves like recruiting green sponsors and installing a huge solar power facility at Pocono Raceway can make a great deal of difference by helping more people take in new technologies as part of a familiar landscape. With sustainability becoming a concept that fits in smoothly with many different interests and lifestyles, the “drill baby, drill” mentality will all the more quickly fall out of step with mainstream America.
Image: Old tires by Andy Welsher on flickr.com.
Tina Casey specializes in military and corporate sustainability, advanced technology, emerging materials, biofuels, and water and wastewater issues. Tina’s articles are reposted frequently on Reuters, Scientific American, and many other sites. You can also follow her on Twitter @TinaMCasey and Google+.