At a press conference held at the Automobile Club de France, Pierre Fillon, President of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) and Stéphane Darracq, ACO CEO, who were joined by Valérie Bouillon-Delporte, President of Hydrogen Europe and Director of Michelin’s Hydrogen Ecosystem, Juliette Guillemin, Consultant on Sustainable Procurement at AFNOR, Cyrille Roget, Director of Scientific & Innovation Communication at Michelin, Tatiana Calderón, driver with the Richard Mille Racing Team, Frédéric Sausset, the first quadruple-amputee driver to compete in and finish the 24 Hours of Le Mans, and Camille Delamar, Co-Founder of Ecotable, presented the ACO’s CSR strategy.
Since 1906, the ACO has built its development on robust commitments and solidarity, with innovation placed firmly at the heart of its concerns.
Now, in 2021, the ACO is looking to take its sustainable development strategy to the next level and has mapped out its commitments according to three guiding principles.
ENGAGEMANS FOR THE PLANET
- The first of these three principles encompasses the commitments introduced to tackle climate change. The ACO has taken this aspect of sustainable development into consideration for several decades now. However, the new strategy has one clear objective: to pursue carbon neutrality by reducing CO2 emissions and lending support to sustainable projects.
The consequential hydrogen initiative led by the ACO is the prime illustration of this.
ENGAGEMANS FOR A RESPONSIBLE ECONOMY
- This second principle is essential when organising events. It covers the full spectrum of sustainable management commitments to ensure our circuits, events and products have a positive impact on the world around us, and compels us to apply exemplary sustainable and rational management standards.
Every one of the ACO’s activities reaps the benefits of this commitment.
ENGAGEMANS FOR ALL
- The values of solidarity and mutual support have always been central to the ACO’s development and reflect the spirit of the 24 Hours of Le Mans and endurance racing. This third principle underpins the commitments to promote a fairer, more inclusive, more equal, responsible and supportive society.
It reflects one of the ACO’s main objectives: putting people first.
The press conference was also the opportunity to launch the ACO Sustainable Endurance Award, presented by DHL. This award will recognise a competitor’s CSR approach, with emphasis on the progress made from one year to the next. The prize will be awarded according to two markers:
- 50% of the score based on a Low Carbon Impact approach to logistics
- 50% of the score based on an innovative action with a positive social or environmental impact (Positive Innovation).
The H24, the hydrogen-electric prototype currently paving the way for the cars that will compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2024, was also on display at Place de la Concorde. Finally, the press conference heard the official announcement of a collaboration with Tallano, a company that has developed a brake dust capture system which will equip the H24, the first zero-emission racing car.
Pierre Fillon, President of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest: Since its foundation in 1906, the Automobile Club de l’Ouest has shown commitment and support for the world around us while providing a testing ground for the technological innovations that will shape our future mobility. Our commitment encompasses three areas and contributes to 12 of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. In recent years, growing awareness of environmental and societal issues has forced us to think hard about how we get around. At the ACO, contrary to widespread belief, we are convinced that the motor vehicle is compatible with the challenges we now face and, indeed, that it could drive the transition. As always, we will endeavour to live up to our promise to lead the way in sustainable development and sustainable mobility.
Jean Todt, President of the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile: The commitment from the Automobile Club de l’Ouest, organiser of one of the world’s most prestigious motor racing events, is fully aligned with the FIA’s environmental strategy. The ACO is at the forefront of innovations in this respect, as demonstrated by the Mission H24 hydrogen project. More broadly, its action reflects the #PurposeDriven movement launched by the FIA to boost the contribution motorsport and the mobility sector make to society.