Formula E team Envision Racing has revealed its full-size, drivable Formula E Gen3 ‘Recover-E’ car made entirely out of electronic waste (e-waste) at the ExCeL in London on the eve of the capital’s e-prix race.
Annual e-waste production is on track to reach a staggering 75 million tonnes by 20301, with the UK generating the second largest amount of e-waste as a country in 2022. Items thrown away include disposable vapes, mobile phones, laptops, MP3 players, plug and batteries themselves.
The growing phenomenon of single-use vapes means 1.3 million of them are thrown away every week in the UK.
To highlight this urgent issue, Envision Racing partnered with British artist and designer Liam Hopkins to design and build the car entirely of donated electronic products by the UK tech business, Music Magpie and school children. Through this campaign, the team wants to increase awareness of the human impact of e-waste and the need to reuse and recycle old electrical products.
Hopkins said, “Unfortunately today we choose to discard and replace electronics instead of repairing and recycling them leading to a global e-waste crisis. Through design and creativity, we want to show the issue of e-waste and its potential to accelerate the creation of a circular economy.”
The car was unveiled at London’s ExCeL Centre, on the eve of the London E-Prix – the final race of the 2022/23 Formula E season. In addition to being the all-time leading points scorer in Formula E, Envision Racing also has a leadership position for sustainability.
Its pioneering Race Against Climate Change™ programme aims to inspire and empower fans and the wider public to take climate action.
Through Formula E’s platform, Envision Racing exists to make electric mobility and renewable energy a global reality.
Sylvain Filippi, Envision Racing’s Managing Director and CTO said, “Alongside testing new battery technology for cars, we are on a mission to tackle e-waste and ensure the precious metals, minerals and materials in old laptops, mobile phones and other electrical devices are extracted and reused.
“If the millions upon millions of Lithium batteries that are found in vapes and other products are recycled, it will dramatically reduce both the need for rare earth mineral mining and the large energy needed to create the batteries from scratch. We want to increase awareness of e-waste and help build a ‘circular economy’ where electrical products are reused or recycled, not thrown away.”
Alongside the car, Envision Racing launched the Recover E Waste to Race competition, to engage young people and fans around the world. Children and young people were invited to create their own e-waste car, made out of recycled electronic materials.
Winners in three categories included 10 year olds Edie Griffin, Chidubem Ngene, Liam Mount, Nora Popoola and Olivia Ho from Abbott Community Primary School in Manchester, Monteor Popocatl Angelica Mirian, 14 years old from Mexico, and Hera May, 17 years old from the Philippines.
You can find more information about Envision Racing’s Race Against Climate Change and the Recover E campaign here.