The Brazilian Stock Car Pro Series Is Recycling Its Used Lubricating Oil
The Brazilian Stock Car Pro Series is the biggest motorsports series in South America and was created in 1979. It has some of the biggest names in world motorsport with drivers such as drivers Felipe Massa, Rubens Barrichello and Tony Kanaan. For the 2023 season, the series announced a partnership with the Brazilian company Lwart - Soluções Ambientais [Lwart - Environmental Solutions] to collect used lubricating oil in cars.
Image: Stock Car Pro Series, Interlagos by Gabrielle Tiepolo
Get to know Lwart - Environmental Solutions
Lwart is a Brazilian company, national leader, and an international reference in producing high-performance base oil from used and contaminated lubricating oil (UCLO). It has been operating since 1975 with the mission of transforming used oil. Three years ago, the company expanded its operation area and started offering complete solutions for Waste Management. Lwart has 18 collection centers throughout Brazil, around 1,800 employees, a refining unit, and a plant specialized in Waste Management to offer the necessary solutions to around 70,000 customers annually.
Image: Lwart Soluções Ambientais
How used lubricating oil is collected in Stock Car Pro Series
Lwart collection centers are spread across the thirteen Brazilian states, that is, almost all the places that Stock Car Pro Series will race in 2023. The only place that has yet to be finalised for how this partnership will happen is in the Buenos Aires stage, in Argentina.
The process of recycling and transforming the lubricating oil used in Stock Car Pro Series starts with a collection. Collection points are installed near the pits of the 16 teams to collect the oil consumed by the 34 cars during practice and races.
Every race weekend, the oil waste collected is carefully stored and transported by one of Lwart's trucks to one of the collection centers throughout the country. After that, the collected oil is taken to the refining plant in Lençóis Paulista, in São Paulo. This refining plant is one of the most modern plants in the world, making Lwart a Brazilian leader and an international reference in the field.
Image: Lwart oil collection point in Interlagos by Gabrielle Tiepolo
The recycling process
As soon as the UCLO arrives at the refining plant, it is transformed into a high-quality, pure base oil, a raw material for producing lubricants. Due to the advanced technology with the process, almost 100% of the UCLO is reused. When the base oil leaves the refining plant, it is delivered to primary producers, who recycle it into a new lubricant and make the base oil return to the market. From there, it returns to the market as an industrial, agricultural, automotive and electrical product, thus forming a circular sustainable cycle.
Why is it important to collect this oil?
It is vital to know that the illegal burning of used lubricating oil generates toxic gases which can cause diseases, and accelerate climate change. In addition, the inappropriate disposal of used lubricating oil can contaminate water sources, an essential natural resource for the planet. For instance, 1 liter of used lubricating oil can contaminate 1 million liters of water, which takes a person 14 years to consume.
The logistics process
It is worth highlighting the reverse logistics process present in the course of this project. Reverse logistics consists of collecting, disassembling, and processing used materials, parts, and items of other products to guarantee the environment's sustainable recovery. In addition, Lwart issues two certificates to its client for each operation: the CCO (Oil Collection Certificate) and the CDF (Final Destination Certificate), so Stock Car will also receive these documents that ensure compliance with environmental standards.
Image: Lwart Soluções Ambientais, 2023
Rodrigo Maia, Director of Collection and Logistics at Lwart Soluções Ambientais, says, "It is a challenging project due to the logistical complexity, but at the same time very rewarding to see the commitment of the largest motorsport series in Brazil involved in the circular economy cause. The responsible and safe collection of oil and its correct destination, re-refining, contribute to the preservation of the environment, and, of course, contribute directly to Stock Car's commitment to sustainability".
Fernando Julianelli, CEO of Vicar, Stock Car's event organizer, points out that "Sustainability is one of the most important issues that we have on the agenda in society, and Stock Car needs to have a specialized partnership such as Lwart's support re-refining the oil that we use it in our races." He adds, "It is worth highlighting that this project is important not only because we guarantee, through Lwart, the correct destination of our oil, but also for the example and dissemination of responsible attitudes in this field, with the public and everyone involved in our events."