Torino Airport in Italy has created a 100% green aircraft turnaround process, by implementing an electrically powered fleet and sustainable ground handling operations. As a result, the airport expects to achieve its net zero targets before its 2050 deadline, as well as fulfilling its Toulouse Declaration commitments.
Operated by ground services company Sagat Handling, the electric fleet available at Torino Airport includes: baggage tractors for underboard approach of vehicles requiring towing; mobile generator ground power units (GPU) for powering aircraft and this equipment when the engines are off; passenger ladders for the ascent of passengers to the aircraft; baggage belts for unloading baggage embarked in the hold; lifting platform ambulifts for boarding passengers with reduced mobility; and towbarless aircraft tractors or pushbacks for pushing the aircraft in reverse to exit the parking.
The airport has estimated that completing a turnaround with electric vehicles prevents around 100kg of CO2 from being released. With the current availability of green vehicles, the reduced impact of CO2 emitted per day is approximately 1 metric ton. In comparison, the average fuel consumption for a traditional diesel-powered baggage tractor is around 1.70kg of fuel, equivalent to 5.4kg of CO2 released a day. A traditional diesel-powered GPU would use 14.5kg of fuel and release 46kg of CO2 and a traditional diesel-powered baggage belt would use 10.5kg of fuel, and release 33.3kg of CO2.
Torino Airport has also expanded the number of parking aprons where passengers can be boarded by walk-in/walk-out procedures, thus avoiding the use of diesel-powered buses (1.66kg of fuel, equivalent to 5.3kg of CO2 emitted). The renewal of the airport fleet is a process that has been underway for several years, and the airport’s goal is to have at least 40% of hybrid or full-electric powered vehicles by 2023. The existing fleet will also be joined by an electric minivan dedicated to executive services in general aviation and soon by an electric ambulance to carry out the medical service on the apron.
Andrea Andorno, CEO of Torino Airport, commented, “Aware that the sustainability of our operations must drive the development of the airport, we are proud to be able to offer airlines that choose our airport a zero-impact turnaround, thanks to the investments we have made on the continuous renewal of our fleet with electric vehicles and the purchase of 100% electricity from certified renewable sources.”