Airports Council International has announced that 259 airports are now actively engaged in addressing their impact on climate change as part of the Airport Carbon Accreditation program, with 49 airport operators carbon neutral.
Niclas Svenningsen, who heads the Climate Neutral Now initiative at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretariat in Bonn, Germany, commented, “Following the conclusions of the IPCC Special Report and COP24 [COP24 UNFCCC Climate Change Conference in Katowice, Poland], the need to address the escalating threat of climate change is ever more urgent – that means all hands on deck.
“This isn’t a time for cynicism – it is a time for raising awareness and driving collaborative action. The airport industry’s work through the Airport Carbon Accreditation program is an example of global private sector engagement in climate action – now with 259 airports on board.”
Svenningsen continued, “167 of those are actively reducing their emissions, 102 of them have also engaged others on the airport site to get involved and 49 are running carbon neutral airport operations. I invite people to find out more about their local airport’s involvement and ambitions – mobility is a fundamental part of life, so let’s try to make it as efficient and ecological as possible.”
The latest airport operator to become carbon neutral is Naples International Airport in Italy. After gradually making its way through the different levels of Airport Carbon Accreditation, demonstrating the CO₂ reduction it has made on-site and the engagement of aviation partners, it has invested in Gold Standard offsets to address its remaining residual emissions.
Armando Brunini, CEO of Aeroporto di Napoli, said, “Running an airport is a complex business – there are lots of stakeholders and many collaborations and partnerships that need to be fostered and maintained, if real efficiency gains are to be achieved.
“Our journey to this moment – from initially mapping our carbon emission sources, to reducing our emissions, engaging other companies on the airport site to get involved, and now becoming carbon neutral – have benefited from the framework, guidance and rigor of the Airport Carbon Accreditation program.
“We in the airport business compete with each other on so many fronts: attracting airlines to set up new routes, attracting passengers, being the first to embrace the latest innovation and more. With climate change now an urgent priority, it’s only fitting that we should seek to exceed expectations on this too – as a way of motivating even more climate action within the airport industry and the wider air transport sector.”
With 4 different levels of accreditation covering all stages of carbon management (Mapping, Reduction, Optimization and Neutrality), Airport Carbon Accreditation is independently administered, institutionally endorsed and has the support of the UNFCCC, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), the US Federal Aviation Administration and the European Commission (EC).
Interested in sustainability? Check out the ‘Environment & Sustainability’ stream at the Passenger Terminal Conference, which takes place during Passenger Terminal Expo, on March 26, 27 and 28, 2019, in London.