The Frontstretch: Voices From the Cheap Seats: “Al Gore Effect” Grips NASCAR by Jeff Meyer -- Friday April 20, 2012

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Voices From the Cheap Seats: “Al Gore Effect” Grips NASCAR

Voices From the Cheap Seats · Jeff Meyer · Friday April 20, 2012

 

Sometimes, when reading just about anything that passes as ‘media’ nowadays, all one can do is simply shake one’s head and wonder how people can be so stupid. Some I am sure, feel the same when reading this column, but hey, no one is making you stay here if you don’t want to.

Take for instance, a snippet from my recent morning local newspaper about a fishkill that occurred in a local creek, the cause of which has been run off from efforts to put out a week long fire at, of all places, a tree/brush recycling plant that produces mulch, which we all know is a much better product for the environment than say, trees/brush piled up and left to rot! Anyway, the mulch has been burning nearly a week now and they’ve taken to putting special firefighting foam on it which is presumably much better to fish as it runs off than water. Heck, I dunno…but let me get back to the snippet about the fish! It went something like this…

‘Dead fish, 6 to 8 inches in length, were laying dead along the banks….’

Well! The nerve of those dead fish! Laying there ‘dead’ and all! Where do they get off!? I guess it’s for the best though, had it been LIVE fish laying there dead, that would have been tragically more tragic.

As funny as that snippet may be to me, NASCAR press releases are infinitely more fun and I can tie all this about the dead fish in with NASCAR, thanks to of all things, Earth Day. Here are the brains of NASCAR at work with a few of my own comments thrown in.

From NASCAR Heading Into Earth Day, NASCAR Releases ‘White Paper’ On Green: NASCAR issued a ‘White Paper’ detailing the various programs that have made NASCAR a leader in green initiatives across all sports.

I don’t know that I’d call NASCAR a ‘leader’ in the green initiative, but I will say they should have thought about this years ago. NASCAR is and has definitely been the biggest waste makers of all sports for years, just by the very nature of the sport. And it’s not like the concept of recycling just started to seem like a good idea in the last year or so. In fact, if I’m not mistaken, I do believe that it was Al Gore who came up with the idea even before he invented the internet. My sources tell me that Gore later came up with the internet simply to get his recycling message out more easily to the masses!

The data in “The Sports Leader in Sustainability” illustrates the steps NASCAR has taken in educating fans, reducing the sport’s environmental impact, and validating green technologies both on and off the track.

Want to really reduce the sport’s environmental impact? Try aligning the schedule so everything associated with NASCAR isn’t traveling clear across the country every frickin week! As for edumacatin us ignert fans, I’m sure we could use it! It’s not like we live in cities and towns, 99 percent of which probably have some sort of ordinance(s) insisting that we wash and sort our trash before we throw it out, probably more so than we wash or sort our socks! And why all this sudden need for ‘validation’? Someone in NASCAR’s marketing program got a complex? More on that later…

American Ethanol has been all but a fixture on every NASCAR telecast in 2012, a constant reminder of how the copious amounts of fuel the sport uses are now 15% corn.

This past weekend in Texas, NASCAR eclipsed the two-million mile mark running on Sunoco Green E15 since the seamless transition to the new fuel in February 2011. NASCAR Sprint Cup Series engines have been operating at an even greater level of efficiency due, in part, to NASCAR’s transition to electronic fuel injection this year.

Some of the seams might let some water into the fuel now and then, but no worries! And now that we have electronic fuel injection, NASCAR can remotely turn off any race car at anytime so they no longer have to worry about being blamed for throwing bogus late race “debris” cautions. Just ask David Reutimann!

NASCAR’s release of the ‘White Paper’ is timed to Sunday’s NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in Kansas taking place on Earth Day. NASCAR, Kansas Speedway and several of NASCAR’s Official Partners will be showcasing many of the environmental sustainability programs that take place each week at race tracks across the country not just on Earth Day.

Among those activities happening at Kansas include:

  • NASCAR’s premier series entitlement sponsor, Sprint, will implement “Recycle for Victory”, a wireless recycling program that benefits charity;

Oh, but of course! Throw your old phone out, buy a new one…and do it often! Don’t worry about all the nasty chemicals used in the making of most of the components of cell phones…it’s all done in China so it ain’t hurting OUR environment!

  • The backstretch of the track will be painted green thanks to NASCAR Official Partner American Ethanol;

Like painting the backstretch green helps the environment!!! How about leaving the damn thing the color it is and not waste all the (environmentally safe, I’m sure) paint to paint it!?

“Hey John, when did YOU start recycling!?”
“Well Bill, I’ll tell ya. That day back at the track in 2012, when I noticed the backstretch had been painted green, well, I just knew then that I should really take my head out of the sand and start taking this environment thing seriously! We all have to do our part. Thanks to that green wall, I see that now!”

  • NASCAR Official Partners Coca-Cola and Coors Light will educate fans on the benefits of recycling and encouraging them to drop plastic bottles and aluminum cans in designated bins;

Again, just a few decades too late there, NASCAR. There ain’t one fan in the stands who hasn’t sat, at some point, either in their own or their buddy’s garage and pitched a ‘empty’ at the barrel or basket that is made for just that purpose. (See above about ‘recycling ordinances’)

  • A new 30-second television spot about the NASCAR Green platform will air during Sunday’s NASCAR on FOX national broadcast at 1 p.m.;

Oh for Bob’s sake! Just what we need, another zarking commercial! Can’t wait. ( I don’t really know who Bob is, but after being called a ‘backwardsass Biblethumping retard’, or something like that last week, I didn’t want to use the name usually associated with that saying and risk offending anyone!)

  • The NASCAR Green logo will appear in the infield grass for the first time at a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event;

“…and when you get done painting the wall green, I dunno,…oh hell, just dump the rest on the grass there!”
(and before some brilliant mind out there writes in to tell me that they use special non-toxic paint for the grass, I KNOW THAT! Just relax and enjoy the commentary, will ya?!)

  • The pace car for the STP 400 is a Toyota Camry Hybrid and will carry the NASCAR Green logo on its trunk lid;

Wanna really go green NASCAR? How about we RACE the hybrids! Half the race under gas power, the other half under electric. Certainly would make pit stops a bit more interesting. (The gas can man would LOVE the second half…”all I gotta do is make sure this here ‘stension cord reaches…”)

  • NASCAR and Kansas Speedway will donate 10 trees to the Gov. Jay Nixon’s Governor’s Joplin Challenge for every green flag that is dropped over the weekend;

Geez NASCAR, if the Texas race is any indication of how races go at these cookie cutters, you guys really went all out! What, we’re talking 20, maybe 30 trees? I know, I know, money doesn’t grow on trees but I guess they are still pretty expensive! Way to help out, Brian France!

  • Miss Sprint Cup will wear a green fire suit throughout the weekend in support of the environment;

In a perfect world, if Miss Sprint Cup really wanted to support the environment, they’d have her wearing noth……oh nevermind.

  • Every race vehicle on the track this weekend will run on Sunoco Green E15, further validating the environmentally responsible high-performance racing fuel.

Again with the need for validation! And what are we exactly validating and how are we doing it any different from any other race week? Doesn’t every race car use Sunoco Green E15, the environmentally responsible high-performance racing fuel, every week? Oh crap…I’m starting to sound like a commercial myself! I better quit!

Stay off the wall, (you big dummy! Its got wet paint!)

Jeff Meyer

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RickP
04/20/2012 07:40 AM
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I’m with you on all of this.

Of all the things I think of w/ NASCAR, ‘green’ isn’t it and I really don’t care. I’m tired of all this junk trying to make us feel guilty about everything we do and trying to restrict our action with laws and regulations so that they can feel ‘green’ and good about themselves.

Then there’s the American Ethanol commercials/tidbits that are thrown about every friggin’ race airing. First, we subsidize the corn going into the ethanol then we subsidize the creating of the ethanol, then are forced to put less efficient fuel into our vehicles, then we have to buy more gallons to go the same distance, thus resulting in more taxes paid per mile due to buying more gallons. How convenient for us consumers!

If people want to save cans, bottles, drive hybrids/electrics, take fewer showers, turn off their lights, not run their heat or A/C, compost, etc. in an effort to be ‘environmentally responsible’, have at it. Just leave me out of it if I want out.

john
04/20/2012 08:29 AM
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For those of us in the repair industry, ethanol has become a boon—it rots every component of the fuel delivery system, requiring frequent repairs, particularly to things like injector seals. Wonder if they factor that “cost” into how much they save the environment.

Joe..
04/20/2012 12:45 PM
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I just love the irony of NASCAR. Good one Jeff. Spot on RickP.

Techy
04/21/2012 03:19 PM
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I sincerely hope that your comment “I do believe that it was Al Gore who came up with the idea even before he invented the internet” was pure humorous sarcasm and you don’t honestly believe Al Gore invented the internet. Sadly too many people here might actually believe you.

Jeff Meyer FS staff
04/23/2012 05:07 PM
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Yes Techy It was sarcasm!

 

Contact Jeff Meyer

Recent articles from Jeff Meyer:

Voices From The Cheap Seats: The Tale Of Two Tires
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