The Circuit of The Americas is the newest member of the Green Sports Alliance, underlining its determination to produce the first environmentally-friendly F1 venue when it debuts on the 2012 schedule.

The Green Sports Alliance is a unique coalition of sports teams and venues, professional sport leagues, the Natural Resources Defense Council, and the Bonneville Environmental Foundation, which all work with the US Environmental Protection Agency and other environmental and green building experts. Less than a year since its public launch, the non-profit organisation comprises more than 40 professional and collegiate sports teams and nearly 90 sports venues with a mission to help all enhance their environmental performance. The Circuit of The Americas, being built from scratch on the outskirts of Texas state capital Austin, will be the first F1 facility to become a member of the Alliance.

"I applaud the circuit's commitment to setting a standard for sustainability in North American motorsports," Lucia Athens, chief sustainability officer for the City of Austin, commented, "Joining forces with the Green Sports Alliance will increase their green horsepower and put Austin on the map yet again for its leadership and innovation. The Green Sports Alliance has been providing expert technical assistance to many of the sports leagues, and can now assist motorsports in achieving greener results."

Members of the Green Sports Alliance share best practices to improve the environmental performance of their venues, saving millions of dollars through energy and water conservation, waste reduction, recycling and composting. By tracking environmental performance, sports facilities learn how they compare to their counterparts and how to maximise sustainability efforts. Alliance members have reported reductions as high as 30 per cent in energy usage, 60 per cent in natural gas use and more than 20 per cent in water use.

"We are excited to be collaborating with the best minds in sustainable facility management," Edgar Farrera, sustainability director at the Circuit of The Americas, confirmed, "We look forward to developing new approaches to environmentally sustainable operations at our facility and sharing what we learn with organisations and companies around the world."

The Circuit of The Americas' master plan features a variety of permanent structures designed for business, education, entertainment and race use. Its signature element will be a 3.4-mile circuit track with capacity for 120,000 fans. Other support buildings will include a medical facility, a conference centre, a banquet hall as well as an expansive outdoor live music space. Future proposed amenities include a driving/riding experience, a motorsports driving club, kart track, grand plaza event centre and tower, and a trackside recreational vehicle park.

Following a protracted financial wrangle that threatened the entire future of the project, work is gathering pace on both the circuit and its ancillaries, with latest reports suggesting that most of the facility could be complete by August, well ahead of the scheduled mid-November race date.

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