Earth Day sees a paper free Media Center

After years and years of printing nearly one ton of paper per season, the Media Center of each MotoGP round is now a no-print area

The return of small numbers of journalists to the Media Center in 2021 after a year of not being able to carry out their task from their main center of operations has seen a significant change, as they have encountered empty pigeon-holes upon walking into the room, spotting large signs with “Paper results service is discontinued” accompanied by big QR codes for them to scan and being led to the results section on the website.

The working areas for the press in each of the circuits hosting a Grand Prix have taken a large step in the reduction of the sport’s environmental impact. This action has been taken to eradicate the enormous amount of wasted paper each season. This goal had been a work in progress for years, since the Dorna Media Office had been using digital waivers, an online accreditation system, and a central site called PressArea from which the media could download all relevant information that at some point was printed in the Media Center.

The environmental plan instigated by the FIM started in 2011 with media centers being the first point of action that would then expand to the rest of areas of the circuits hosting a GP. Reduction of waste, recycling, energy saving, and other measures were implemented. Other motorcycling Championships would soon follow the project.

Paper reduction has always been one of the main goals of the initiative, yet one of the hardest to accomplish. But the arrival of Covid-19 played an important role in this process. After one year of home office and distance working where paper printers were not necessarily available, journalists found the way to work digitally without the need of paper results at hand, so this momentum has been perfect to finally eliminate printing at the circuits. About 20,000 copies were printed per Grand Prix. This could easily add up to 400,000 printouts per year. A lot of electricity and printer ink was used up. Too much, considering the short lifespan of the paper results. 

Media has been encouraged to subscribe to the results emails, to check a server where all the contents are uploaded and to check the results on the official website. QR codes have been printed and made available in the Media Center for everybody to scan to access different services and contents for people working in the media. It is a group effort that requires the work of both staff and users. The media is now comfortable working in a digital environment using online contents, downloadable and editable PDFs, and it is a more practical and neat way to organize their material.

Kattia Juárez, FIM Sustainability Commission Director: “All economic activity generates impacts, positive and negative. Sport is no exception to this, but it is also a great ally for sustainable development. Each FIM event is governed by the Environmental Code which was adopted in 1994. This Code contains regulations and recommendations that each organiser must comply with. Thus, in 2011, together with the MotoGP communications department, the FIM Sustainability Commission implemented an Action Plan for the press rooms with the aim of optimising resources, mainly paper consumption, which generated one of the greatest impacts on this area. In this era, in which a resilient and sustainable attitude is required for a return adapted to current needs, significant changes like this make a difference. Today we can say that the MotoGP press rooms are paperless and all the documentation and results are communicated electronically. Congratulations on this Earth Day 2021.”

From now on, by taking one small step such as not printing, the total numbers that will be saved per year are:

1 ton of paper

4 tons of trees (about 23 trees)

25 BTUs of electricity (equivalent to 30 residential refrigerators operated per year)

18,000 pounds / 8000 kg of CO2 (equivalent to 1.6 cars per year)

21,400 gallons / 81,000 litres of water

1,100 pounds / 500 kg of solid waste during paper production

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