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Published on : Saturday, November 9, 2013
The airport industry’s efforts to address its carbon emissions were highly commended last night at the annual global Sustainia Awards ceremony in Copenhagen. As part of this year’s event, the EU Commissioner for Climate Action, Connie Hedegaard announced the finalists and winner of the European Commission’s World You Like contest.
The voluntary climate change initiative Airport Carbon Accreditation was named one of the top 3 low carbon projects for Europe, out of 269 entries. It was recognised as an efficient and innovative climate solution that is making a real difference in helping airports address their CO2 emissions.
Collecting the ‘Finalist’ award from Commissioner Connie Hedegaard, Olivier Jankovec, Director General ACI EUROPE said “We are delighted that Airport Carbon Accreditation has won this distinction at Sustainia tonight. We launched this programme 4 years ago during the worst trading conditions, but our faith was quickly rewarded by solid uptake from airports all around Europe and beyond. This is a fantastic recognition for the 90 airports that are currently certified under the programme – for their on-going work to map, reduce, optimise and ultimately neutralise their carbon emissions.”
He added “The recent ICAO Assembly confirmed the ambitious climate agenda of the entire air transport sector, supporting the development of a global market-based measure as part of a comprehensive action plan. As the face of aviation on the ground, airports are fully committed to addressing their carbon footprints – this is also part of a being a good neighbour serving the economic & social needs of their communities. Airport Carbon Accreditation frames, supports and incentivises the collective work that airports are doing to make their operations more carbon efficient and their business more sustainable.”
Airport Carbon Accreditation is institutionally-endorsed¹ and has already won praise from ICAO, UNEP and the EU’s Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas. Independently administered by leading global sustainability consultancy WSP Environment & Energy, it has established itself as the airport industry’s global standard for carbon management.
In Europe, 77 airports in 24 countries are currently certified at one of the 4 available levels of certification (‘Mapping’, ‘Reduction’, ‘Optimisation’ and ‘Neutrality’), including 14 that are carbon neutral. Combined with the certification of 12 airports in the Asia-Pacific region of ACI and 1 airport in ACI Africa’s region, the programme now comprises 90 certified airports.
These airports welcome around 22% of global air passenger traffic every year. In year 4 of the programme (June 2012 to May 2013), the collective reduction achieved was over 170,000 tonnes of CO2, enough energy to power 71,000 households for a year.
The World You Like Contest is an EU-wide contest to find the best projects and programmes which help bring society closer to a low carbon economy. This year’s contest had 269 entries, which were narrowed down to a shortlist of 10, after a public vote lasting 5 weeks. An independent jury deliberated over the shortlist of 10 and its final verdict was announced at Sustainia last night.