BRUSSELS, HONG KONG, CASABLANCA, WASHINGTON DC, PANAMA and MONTREAL - While aircraft operators are preparing for the implementation of CORSIA, ICAO’s global market-based measure to address emissions from international aviation, the new year has kicked off with renewed efforts by the global airport industry towards addressing its CO2 emissions, through the independent and voluntary global programme, Airport Carbon Accreditation.
Angela Gittens, Director General, ACI World commented “An impressive 3.2 billion air passengers now travel through airports certified at one of the 4 levels of Airport Carbon Accreditation – a testament to how much the programme has helped mobilise airport operators towards addressing their carbon footprints. Airport Carbon Accreditation is enabling a multi-speed effort now involving 211 airports across the world and it’s inspiring to see the level of innovation and diversity with which** airports are working to reduce their emissions.”
She added “I would particularly like to congratulate Geneve Aeroport and Galapagos Ecological Airport on achieving carbon neutral status - this marks the moment from which there are now carbon neutral airports in every ACI region of the world. This really sends a message to the wider world that carbon management is a valid consideration for every business no matter where they are located.”
Andre Schneider, General Manager of Geneve Aeroport commented “We take pride in being able to say that we have delivered on the commitment we made last year, to reduce the net emissions under our control to zero. Now that we have reached to Level 3+ of Airport Carbon Accreditation, we intend to continue our work on the various environmental aspects of our operations with the same zeal.”
Jorge Rosillo, General Manager, Galapagos Ecological Airport commented "It is a great honor for us to receive this certification at Level 3+ Neutrality as the first airport in Latin America & the Caribbean. Most importantly, our Neutrality status is the fruit of a group effort. The support for our ecological approach to running an airport came from all levels of our organization - from the top management at Corporacion America to each & every employee, who takes pride in being part of Galapagos Ecological Airport. At the same time, the whole process of measuring and reducing our carbon footprint was facilitated by the intelligible framework provided by Airport Carbon Accreditation."
Javier Martinez Botacio, Director General ACI-LAC said "This is a landmark moment for us in the ACI-LAC region - I sincerely congratulate Galapagos Ecological Airport on their success in becoming the first carbon neutral airport in the region. More than that, we are very encouraged by the fact that the learnings and efficiencies achieved through their carbon management journey up to Level 3+ will ultimately be implemented by airports across the Region."
In addition to reducing their carbon footprint through energy efficiency measures and the use of renewable energy, these airports invested in carbon offsets funding biomass and cook stoves projects, purchased under the UNFCCC Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Gold Standard.
With 4 different levels of accreditation covering all stages of carbon management (Mapping, Reduction, Optimisation and Neutrality), Airport Carbon Accreditation is independently administered, institutionally-endorsed² and has the support of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), US Federal Aviation Administration and the European Commission (EC).
In Africa, there are now 10 airports certified at one of the 4 levels of the Airport Carbon Accreditation, 41 in Asia-Pacific, 118 in Europe, 8 in Latin-America & Caribbean and 34 in North America.
1 ACI is currently working with an Environmental policy consultancy on a comprehensive assessment of the quality of offsetting standards and offsetting project types. Over the past 8 years ago, climate action by European airports has become the norm and they are getting more ambitious about what they can do. The study currently in development aims to help drive that further.
* Read the full AirportCO2 interview with Jorge Rosillo from Galápagos Ecological Airport: http://www.airportco2.org/component/interviews/interviews.html?id=7
**Airports are at different points on this journey to become cleaner and more efficient. As the centrepoints of a complex web of aircraft movements, technical operations and surface access transport, airports can address their CO2 emissions in a variety of ways. These can include better insulation and energy efficiency, switching to green energy sources, investing in hybrid, electric or gas-powered service vehicles, encouraging employees, passengers & visitors to use public transport, working with airlines & air traffic management to reduce runway taxiing times and implement green landing processes and much more. Originally developed and launched by ACI Europe in June 2009, Airport Carbon Accreditation was extended to airports in Asia-Pacific, in November 2011 (in partnership with ACI Asia-Pacific) and to African airports in June 2013, (in partnership with ACI Africa). In September 2014 North American airports became eligible to apply to the programme (in partnership with ACI-NA) and airports in Latin-America & Caribbean in December 2014.
2 The programme is administered by the leading consultancy WSP and overseen by an independent Advisory Board including representatives from the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention for Climate Change), ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation), UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme), the European Commission, ECAC (European Civil Aviation Conference), EUROCONTROL and Manchester Metropolitan University.