Frankfurt Airport sets 30 percent emissions reduction target for 2020 and plans for a future 'eco terminal'
Frankfurt Airport is is reorganizing its ground power supply operations for aircraft to save on emissions (photo: Fraport)
Fri 20 June 2008 – Fraport, the manager and operator of Frankfurt Airport, has announced a six-point environmental programme that includes reducing CO2 emissions per passenger by 30 percent from the 2005 level by 2020, saving about 130,000 tonnes of CO2 annually. The operator has also committed to ensuring the proposed expansion plans for the airport will be achieved in a carbon-neutral manner.
Fraport’s Executive Board Chairman, Dr Wilhelm Bender, said the additional energy consumption associated with expansion and the ensuing higher carbon dioxide emissions will be offset by savings in other areas. As examples, he cited improvements in the energy efficiency of office and service buildings, the use of state-of-the-art information and communications technology to reduce fuel consumption, reorganization of ground power supply for aircraft by eliminating diesel-powered mobile ground power units, as well as energy efficient heating and lighting.
By using electricity stemming mainly from hydroelectric power production, Fraport expects to reduce CO2 emissions at the airport in 2008 and 2009 to 65,000 tonnes, down from 250,000 tonnes in 2006. “This 75% reduction represents a great leap towards improved climate protection,” said Bender.
Fraport is considering construction of a geothermal power plant at the airport to reduce emissions still further and a feasibility study is currently being conducted.
A major element of the expansion programme is a future Terminal 3, which Bender describes as an ‘eco terminal’. “The use of energy-efficient, innovative building, engineering and design,” says Fraport, “will ensure a low-emissions terminal that benefits from opportunities resulting from geothermal energy and photovoltaic technology.”
Bender also sees significant potential in reducing emissions by further advancing the integration of air, rail and road transportation networks. He points to ongoing programmes to improve passenger and employee travel to the airport, such as the promotion of high-speed rail, improvements in public transport services in cooperation with public transit organizations, as well as the ‘Job Ticket’ programme for Fraport staff. In the cargo sector, Fraport has committed to shifting truck traffic from the highways to the rail system.
Meanwhile, Fraport is beginning preparation work on a new runway that is expected to be opened by winter 2011. Following a court ruling, the airport can take “preliminary possession” of land in neighbouring Kelsterbach and undertake “reversible activities”, such as ground-water measuring and sampling, ecological surveys and searching for buried war munitions, until fast-track proceedings have been completed on whether runway construction can proceed.
Fraport’s recently issued Sustainability Report 2007 ‘Fairplay’ (in German only) can be downloaded from the Fraport website.