Canadian politician slams Vettel’s ‘hypocrisy’ in the face of tar sands criticism RaceFans

Sebastian Vettel’s criticism of Canada’s exploitation of the Alberta tar sands has prompted a fierce reaction from the region’s energy minister.

The Aston Martin driver is sporting a new helmet this weekend bearing the slogans “Stop mining tar sands” and “Canada’s climate crime”.

The vast tar sands of Alberta, west of Quebec where Vettel is competing in the Canadian Grand Prix this weekend, are being mined for their oil reserves. The mining process has contaminated the surrounding environment and endangered wildlife, as well as displacing indigenous communities in the area.

Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage, a member of the United Conservative Party of Alberta and a supporter of pipeline construction, announced Vettel’s position in a series of social media posts.

“I’ve seen a lot of hypocrisy over the years but this one takes the cake,” Savage wrote, pointing out that Saudi Aramco is the title sponsor of Vettel’s Aston Martin team.

“A racing driver sponsored by Aston Martin, with funding from Saudi Aramco, complains about the tar sands.

“Saudi Aramco has the largest daily oil production of any company in the world. It is reputed to be the largest contributor to global carbon emissions, of any company, since 1965.

“Rather than demonize the oil sands, which are on the path to net zero, people could seek to reduce their own personal carbon footprint. Maybe a pedal car for Formula 1?

Formula 1 has announced a plan to become a net carbon emitter by 2030. Vettel defended his description of Canada’s tar sands mining as a ‘crime’ during Friday’s press conference at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

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“I find it – fascinating, maybe that’s not the right word – but there’s a lot going on. We live in a time when we are so aware of so many things.

Feature: Vettel’s unexpected journey from hybrid critic to low-tech eco-activist

“I think what’s happening in Alberta is a crime because you’re cutting down a lot of trees and basically destroying the right place to extract oil and the way to do it with the oil sands, the Oil sands mining is horrible for nature.

“Clearly, Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions have increased since they started doing so. The site was, from what I read, only found 20 years ago.

“The prime minister said no other country would find these resources and pick them up; I think that in principle every country and every person has their opinions and position. My personal opinion is that I disagree.

Vettel said it was important to bring people’s attention to the issues of fossil fuel addiction.

“There is so much science around the subject that fossil fuels are going to disappear. Living in a time we live in now, these things should no longer be allowed and should no longer happen.

“So it’s just in principle to raise awareness of what’s going on in the first place. I think a lot of people in Canada, a lot of people around the world don’t know that. »

“It’s just to think about future generations and the world we will leave in their hands once they are old enough to continue to care for it,” he added. “I think it’s fair to deal with it and not destroy it.”

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Canadian Grand Prix 2022

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