Norwegian airports join carbon accreditation programme as they seek to improve environmental performance
(Photo: Gaute Bruvik/Avinor)
Wed 14 July 2010 – Three Norwegian airports – Oslo Gardermoen, Trondheim Værnes and Kristiansand Kjevik – have become the first in the country to join the Airport Carbon Accreditation programme. The scheme, which comprises four levels, has the long-term goal of neutralizing emissions at participating airports and 19 airports from 11 European countries have so far qualified for accreditation. Olav Mosvold Larsen, Senior Environmental Adviser for Avinor, the operator of Norway’s 46 airports, says the accreditation process is demanding and involves time-consuming work on documentation. “The initial move is somewhat limited but the goal, of course, is to include more airports in the programme,” he adds.
The first level of the accreditation programme requires detailed documentation of the airport’s emissions, while Level 2 requires the drawing up of a detailed plan for emission-reducing measures and clear goals in terms of emissions reductions. At the third level, the airport management must additionally involve all stakeholders involved in activities at the airport. Level 3+ requires the offsetting of emissions that cannot be achieved by the airport’s own efforts. Oslo and Trondheim have entered the programme at Level 3+ while Kristiansand has entered at the second level.
Ongoing work is progressing at the three airports on establishing and developing efficient energy facilities for renewable heating and cooling systems
Focus has also been directed at improving the environmental performance of the vehicle fleets. “This entails exchanging old vehicles with new and more fuel-efficient vehicles, as well as the switch to renewable fuels, but this obviously takes time,” says Larsen. “In the short term, we are raising consciousness amongst employees concerning the importance of energy-efficient driving, such as not leaving vehicles idling and cutting down the unnecessary use of vehicles.”
Larsen reports the accreditation programme has already motivated environmental efforts at the participating airports.
According to its latest annual environmental report, Avinor’s CO2 emissions for all its airports totalled almost 21,000 tonnes, with Oslo Airport accounting for approximately 7,000 tonnes. CO2 emissions from sources within the company’s control amounted to 10,800 tonnes while indirect emissions from other sources totalled 8,900 tonnes. These numbers do not include the final processing of waste, as this has only been calculated for Oslo Airport.