Christchurch Airport awarded for energy efficiency

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New Zealand’s Christchurch Airport has been awarded as an efficiency champion after significantly reducing its energy consumption and using cleaner energy sources.

Presented at the Sustainable Business Network Awards, the hub has dedicated itself to sustainability for many years. Since opening its new NZ$237m (US$162m) terminal in 2013, Christchurch Airport has cut its electricity, diesel and gas consumption by 21%.

Rhys Boswell, general manager for strategy and sustainability at Christchurch Airport, commented, “This is remarkable work from the team involved and we are very proud of them, especially given these savings have been achieved when we’ve had record numbers of passengers through the terminal.

“Initially, our aim was to have the terminal’s annual energy use at 24kWh per square meter per month by 2017. The team smashed that quickly. They then broke our goal for 2020 and then the target we set for 2025. We are very proud of this.” The target for 2020 was 23.5kWh per square meter per month, and for 2025 was 22.5kWh per square meter per month. In 2017, the terminal used 19.3kWh per square meter per month.

The airport has also installed new electric ground power units (GPU) on four of the terminal’s aircraft stands.

“These mean airplanes can be plugged into our electricity network while they are on the ground in Christchurch,” added Sowell. “Otherwise they have to burn fuel to power run their systems. Now every day when the Emirates A380 flies in, it plugs into a GPU and saves 1,000kg (2,204 lb) of fuel or 3,150kg (6,944 lb) of carbon emissions each turnaround.”

Christchurch Airport’s official sustainability strategy requires it to measure, report and continually improve its performance in the five key areas of water, energy, waste, land and noise.

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Kirstie joined the team in early 2017 and brings writing, communications and client experience with her. Now an assistant editor, she produces content for our magazines and websites. Away from the office, you will find her blogging on her lifestyle website or searching the internet for photos of sausage dogs.

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