Airports Council International-North America (ACI-NA) yesterday announced the launch of the Airport Carbon Accreditation programme in North America at its 2014 Annual Conference & Exhibition in Atlanta, Georgia.
At the same time, ACI-NA also announced that Seattle-Tacoma International Airport has become the very first airport in North America to achieve accreditation. Airport Carbon Accreditation—pioneered by ACI EUROPE in 2009 and since implemented to great effect at airports in Europe, Asia-Pacific and Africa—independently assesses and recognizes airports' efforts to measure, manage and reduce their CO2 emissions.
Just weeks ahead of the UN Climate Summit on 23 September, where UN Member States and leaders from public and private sectors will meet to discuss the pressing issue of climate change, this latest development underscores airports' commitment to taking a leading role in ensuring the sustainability of the aviation industry.
ACI is a founding member of the cross-sector Air Transport Action Group (ATAG), whose members are collectively committed to meeting the following goals for international aviation where CO2 emissions are concerned:
• Improving fleet fuel efficiency by 1.5% per year through 2020;
• Stabilizing net emissions from 2020 through carbon-neutral growth, subject to concerted industry and governmental initiatives; and
• Reducing net aviation carbon emissions 50% by 2050, relative to 2005
"The rollout of ACI EUROPE's Airport Carbon Accreditation programme sends the message loud and clear—the many players in this vital industry are committed to working together for the benefit of the environment and the sustainable growth of aviation," said Angela Gittens, Director General, ACI World. "To allow future generations to meet their needs for economic and social development, increased connectivity and air transport capacity are fundamental. North America's adoption of the Airport Carbon Accreditation programme is exemplary of how airports the world over are working with their local communities and within the larger global context to prove that growth will not be achieved to the detriment of the environment."
The Airport Carbon Accreditation programme spearheads ACI's various efforts to minimize aviation's impact on the environment. Other ACI initiatives aimed at curbing CO2 emissions include reducing taxiway separations, Airport Collaborative Decision Making (A-CDM)—a system that can reduce taxi times, optimize airport throughput, increase capacity and operational efficiency, save fuel and alleviate noise—and the Airport Carbon and Emissions Reporting Tool (ACERT)—a free software tool developed by Transport Canada which allows airports to begin tracking their emissions and which can be used as a first step toward Airport Carbon Accreditation.
For more information on ACI's commitment to ensuring the sustainable growth of the worldwide aviation industry, please visit http://www.aci.aero/environment.