Ambitious sustainability target

01 July 2013

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Auckland Airport sets ambitious targets in all operating areas and sustainability is no exception. The company aims to reduce its energy, water, waste and carbon emissions from ground transport by 20 per cent by the year 2020.

The emissions will be measured against passenger numbers over time and detailed plans are being produced to help achieve this target. An energy plan is first up, followed closely by waste and then water later this year. Carbon emissions from ground transport requires the development of a specific methodology, so that will be a project for 2014.

The airport’s sustainability and environmental manager Martin Fryer says it’s an exciting time at the company, particularly considering the opportunity to reduce costs and environmental impact.

“Energy efficiency projects achieved savings of $122,000 last financial year and attracted a similar amount in government funding,” Martin says.

In the 2014 financial year the company’s waste costs are expected to come down by 10 per cent and a waste minimisation plan will have been produced. New and improved waste collection and segregation facilities are also planned for that period as well as an expansion of pilot projects.

“Improved data capture means we now understand the true environmental impacts of waste disposal,” Martin says. “For example, sending waste from the terminals to landfill rather than recycling, creates the equivalent of 240 tonnes of CO2 per month. That’s an environmental impact we can all do something about.

“In fact the whole airport community can help with these targets by thinking about energy, water, waste and their journey to work and I would be delighted to hear of any bright ideas that could help us achieve our goals.”