As Earth Day approached, Pocono Raceway shared their green initiative successes and their future outlook. ‘The Tricky Triangle’s’ green initiatives began in 2010 with the creation of their three-megawatt solar farm and sustainability continues to be one of the core values which drives the Raceway and their staff.
The Raceway’s 25-acre, three megawatt solar farm officially went online in May 2010. The 39,960 American-made solar panels have since generated over 28 Million Kilowatt hours of electricity. The energy by the solar farm has offset the use of over 771,000 gallons of gasoline and offset 28,838 metric tons of carbon dioxide, which is equivalent to the annual greenhouse gas emissions from approximately 4,462 passenger vehicles. The solar farm provides the energy needs of the track and any unused electricity is placed directly back on the grid to power homes and businesses located near the Raceway.
“Going green is, and will continue to be, a staple for us,” said Nick Igdalsky, Pocono Raceway CEO. “We intend to lead the industry into the next decade as true trailblazers. We promise to increase the number of recycling and compost receptacles around ‘The Tricky Triangle,’ all while reducing the number of trash bins. Camping guests, who stay with us during our race weekend, will continue to receive recycling bags upon their arrival. All of our recycling efforts are based on our diversion percentage goal of 75% by 2019.”
Pocono Raceway’s 2019 diversion goal has been set to ensure three quarters of the waste from the track is recycled and does not end up in a landfill. This initiative, in partnership with Pennsylvania State University, Anheuser-Busch, Coca-Cola, Monster Energy and NASCAR Green, has resulted in a diversion percentage of 55% last summer, up from 40% the previous year, with 17.5 tons of recovered materials being recycled. Additionally, 2,200 pounds of unused food from the 2017 race weekends were donated to Stroudsburg (Pa.) area groups who feed the hungry through the Raceway’s partnership with Rock & Wrap It Up! This June, with assistance from Essity, the track will place compostable paper products in all their Grandstand restrooms.
The 2018 sustainability efforts of the track will continue to support NASCAR Green’s initiatives during the Pocono 400 and Gander Outdoors 400 race weekends with the use of Sunoco Green E15, the recycling of all Goodyear tires used during competition and the recycling of over 1,000 gallons of waste oil. The Raceway is also in the process of retro-fitting and replacing current lightbulbs with more energy-efficient LED bulbs. Fans will see an increase in the amount of recycling receptacles around the facility, especially during their second annual Monster Energy NASCAR Free Friday. Fans who bring an empty can of Monster Energy to be recycled at the track will receive free admission on Friday, June 1, 2018. Over 4,000 Monster Energy cans were recycled during this green and fan-engagement initiative last year.
“We are making a sustained effort to upgrade the facility with energy and water saving components,” said Igdalsky. “Every new building, old building upgraded and overall facility changes will be done with sustainable practices driving the plan. The Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania is a wonderful area to live. Recycling is key to ensuring its beauty is preserved. If it can be done, it will be done. Not simply for our generation, but for our kids, our grandchildren and the Earth.”
For more information about Pocono Raceway’s green efforts, including an updated sustainability report and live deck featuring output from the solar farm, please visit www.poconoraceway.com/green.