Mercedes reduce air travel emissions by 21% through SAF investment

Formula One team also sees female team members increase 16.6% and those from minority ethnic groups increase 8.9%.

The Mercedes Formula One team have reduced air travel emissions by 21 per cent thanks to investment in sustainable aviation fuel (SAF), according to their third annual sustainability report.


  • Team reportedly on track to hit net zero carbon emissions by 2030
  • Scope one and scope two emissions also set to be eliminated by 2026
  • Mercedes also aims to reduce scope three emissions by 50 per cent
  • There was also an 88 per cent reduction in freight emissions through a biofuels trial 
  • Accelerate 25 programme sees female team members increase 16.6 per cent and minority ethnic groups increase 8.9 per cent

Context: Last year, Mercedes became the first global sports team in SAF, a renewable or waste-derived aviation fuel. It is an emerging technology recognised by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) to play a major role in reducing future international aviation emissions.

Before investing in the fuel, aviation accounted for more than one quarter of the Mercedes team’s entire projected carbon footprint.

Comment: Toto Wolff, team principal and chief executive of the Mercedes Formula One team, said: “Performance at any cost, without thought of the wider repercussions, is no longer acceptable in today's world. But being sustainable doesn't have to mean compromise. Delivering sustainable high performance has become a guiding principle in the way we operate.

“Over the last year, we have grown our sustainability activities to get a better understanding of our impact on the planet and our role within society, and to further explore ways in which we can improve. Hitting the brakes isn't an option.”

Coming next: Mercedes will continue to invest in initiatives that will help the team become more sustainable, and there is certainly more work to be done on a diversity standpoint despite clear improvements this year. The team was 11 per cent female in 2019, so there have certainly been steps in the right direction.

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