Race team member planting a tree in a park

Green machines: Dick Johnson Racing goes carbon neutral

Motorsport outfit Dick Johnson Racing has become the first Supercars team to go carbon neutral by dramatically reducing its emissions and offsetting remaining emissions, while also planting thousands of trees.

By Shell on Feb. 15, 2022

Dick Johnson Racing (DJR) has gone carbon neutral and enacted several other significant environmental initiatives, giving it a strong competitive advantage as racing moves towards a more sustainable future.

The team achieved carbon-neutral status by reducing its emissions dramatically and offsetting any remaining emissions.

In the process, it has become the first carbon-neutral Supercars team and attained the highest-level Three Star Environmental Accreditation from the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA).

DJR has also joined the Sports Environment Alliance and planted over 17,000 sustainable, native trees. Co-founder Dr Ryan Story says it’s part of a broader strategy to future-proof DJR and ensure the organisation is making a positive contribution.

“I’ve long maintained that we have a social, moral and ethical responsibility to use this platform wisely including for the benefit of future generations of motorsport supporters,” Dr Story says.

Four key priorities

To become carbon neutral, DJR engaged Colin Trinder, a certified environmental practitioner with extensive experience in the motorsport, natural resource management and defence sectors.

Trinder calculated DJR’s greenhouse gas emissions for their 2020 base year and worked with the team to establish an Environmental Management Plan and Quality Management System.

He identified four key priorities for the team:

  1. Increasing recycling and reducing waste going to landfill from DJR’s operations;
  2. Shifting to 100% renewable energy;
  3. Funding new renewable energy projects to offset DJR’s emissions; and
  4. Reducing total energy use in its business operations and freight logistics.

Together, these four initiatives have brought DJR’s net emissions to zero.

The team itself will play an ongoing role in DJR’s commitment to sustainability and the environment. Team engineer Brad Eyes has been appointed as DJR’s first Environment and Sustainability Manager and will oversee his colleagues’ efforts.

“Innovation, professionalism, efficiency and technology are at the heart of what we do,” says Dr Story.

“We believe in [these measures] for our team and our business, and if we lead by example others might choose to follow suit in their own way.”

Leading the way in Australia

Although DJR’s work aligns with recent efforts by several Formula 1 teams to achieve FIA Environmental Accreditation, it represents a first for an Australian racing team.

It comes at a time when DJR is taking stock of its 40+ years in racing and making plans for the future.

Co-founder Dick Johnson says the team’s record 10 Australian Touring Car/Supercars drivers’ championships and four Bathurst 1000s provides a strong incentive to maintain excellence, on track and off.

“I may be an old bugger now but I’m still very passionate about our team, the positive impact it an have on society and the generations to come,” says Johnson.

“As a bloke with two grandkids, I couldn’t be prouder of the work Ryan and the team have done to make DJR Australia’s first carbon-neutral race team. This is one of the most exciting announcements we’ve made in the team’s history.”

The 2022 Supercars season begins on Friday 4 March with the Beaurepaires Sydney SuperNight event.


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