In just a couple of weeks, the start of the Rally Dakar 2018 will take place, which will be the 40th edition and the tenth to be held in South American territory
Leer en Español: Un Rally Dakar 2018 amigable con el medio ambiente
From about five years ago, the Rally Dakar has taken great interest in making its competition one of the most extreme while making it more environmentally friendly year after year. After all, it is the beauty of continental geography that makes the route possible.
For example, in 2012, Team Latvia made history by registering the first electric car in the competition, which they named OSCAR. Experts from all over the world considered the Latvian team's decision risky, as it was an electric car that would probably need to be recharged somewhere during the competition in the Peruvian and Chilean desert.
Since charging the vehicle seemed impossible, OSCAR was equipped with an extended range system with two 180 kW (245 hp) electric motors and 315 kW (430 hp) maximum power, which didn’t affect the car performance.
A year later, and for years to come, Rally Dakar seeks to compensate the world for its direct carbon emissions caused by its competitors, logistics, and reconnaissance trips. One estimate suggested that the total of these emissions has been of 15,500 tons of CO2. In order to collaborate in the wellbeing of the environment, the company has invested $300,000 dollars each year in projects for social and environmental development led by the Peruvian project “Madre de Dios”, in which they combat deforestation in the Amazon, saving it from losing 120,000 hectares of forest over the next ten years, as well as guaranteeing an adequate habitat for four species of flora and ten species of fauna.
Currently, the organization, together with the participating teams and the governments that participate by being hosts, have tried to establish four key points in their environmental inclined competition: persuade competitors to sign up for the Dakar with vehicles powered by renewable energies, perform specific separation of recycling and garbage; clean and check the condition of the place after each camp; and request the signing of an Environmental Charter of each competitor, which summarizes the commitment that each individual will have to the environment.
Latin American Post | Juan Felipe Guerrero
Copy edited by Susana Cicchetto