Accreditation scheme to be established for enabling European airports to achieve carbon neutral status
Dr Yiannis Paraschis, President of ACI Europe
Fri 20 June 2008 – European airports attending this week’s ACI Europe Annual Assembly have committed to an environmental resolution that includes the implementation of a Europe-wide accreditation scheme within 12 months that will allow airports to follow a common framework for the measurement, reporting and reduction of carbon emissions from their operations, with the possibility of becoming carbon neutral.
ACI claims airports are responsible for just 5% of aviation’s total CO2 emissions but says its members are mindful of their need for environmental responsibility and collective action is the only way forward. It says European airports are keen to tackle their greenhouse gas emissions, and several individual airport operators having already committed to becoming carbon neutral in the past few years with a few having already achieved this.
The Assembly agreed on a ‘roadmap’ for the implementation of the scheme, which is already in development, and will be launched at next year’s annual congress.
“The decades-old approach of airports focusing exclusively on local environmental initiatives is over and the genuine desire among European airports to collectively advance on this issue should not be regarded lightly, especially in view of current economic conditions,” said Dr Yiannis Paraschis, the newly re-elected President of ACI Europe and CEO of Athens International Airport. “For airports, committing to carbon reduction with the ultimate goal of becoming carbon neutral is about looking to the future, setting a vision and continuing their licence to grow.”
Commented ACI Europe’s Director General, Olivier Jankovec: “This is going to be a huge collective effort considering the extreme diversity among European airports, but we are building on existing far-reaching initiatives already underway at many airports.”
ACI Europe represents some 440 airports in 45 European countries that between them handle 90% of commercial air traffic in the region.