Brussels Airport: a carbon neutral airport
In 2010, Brussels Airport set an ambitious target: to reduce its CO2 emissions by 20% by 2020. By 2017, it had already reduced its emissions by 34%. We therefore decided to set a new target: to reduce the CO2 footprint by 40% by 2030. Numerous investments in our energy policy, together with the launch of various projects with external partners, enabled Brussels Airport to achieve the internationally recognised carbon neutrality certification, or full CO2 neutrality of own emissions (Airport Carbon Accreditation level 3+) in 2018.
The Airport Carbon Accreditation certificate from ACI (Airport Council International) is the highest possible certification that an airport can receive. Its presentation took place on 20th June, 2018 during the annual ACI World and ACI Europe congress, of which Brussels Airport was the host. The airport has achieved ‘Airport Carbon Accreditation level 3’ for five years in a row. However, in 2018 the airport committed itself to permanently reducing its CO2 emissions and offsetting residual emissions.
“Brussels Airport’s long-term vision commits it to developing the airport in a sustainable way. Each and every business activity, project and management decision is tested against its impact on the environment. This conscious global approach has enabled the airport to reduce its carbon footprint year-on-year”, says Arnaud Feist, Brussels Airport Company CEO.
How is Brussels Airport reducing CO2 and compensating for residual emissions?
Brussels Airport has an emissions policy for reducing CO2, compensating for residual emissions, and achieving level 3+ certification. But which initiatives have already been executed in this context or are in the pipeline?
- The purchase of exclusively green energy since 2009;
- generating solar energy using own solar panel parks;
- reducing fossil fuel consumption of combustion plants and fleet;
- increasing the energy efficiency of buildings, both old and new: the Connector building uses thermal energy storage , which means less energy is required to heat or cool the building;
- collaborating with other partners, such as airlines, to additionally reduce their CO2 emissions: introduction of 'green landings' and 'collaborative decision making', joint initiatives pertaining to the greening of the fleet;
- Cogeneration plant to generate electricity and heat as of 2019;
- 30 electric buses on the tarmac as of 2019;
To offset residual emissions, Brussels Airport is supporting the Saving Trees climate project in Uganda. In addition to reducing CO2 emissions, it also contributes to various United Nations objectives: protecting biodiversity, combating poverty and promoting social equality. The project is backed by Belgian company CO2Logic and opposes the deforestation of the rainforest in Uganda through the purchase of energy-efficient stoves for the local population. These stoves consume 40 to 50% less wood or charcoal and directly save trees as a consequence.
Read more about the various Brussels Airport initiatives for reducing CO2 emissions and the Saving Trees project in the 2018 Environmental Report.
The Airport Business District must become a vibrant ecosystem of its own, where large companies mingle with start-ups. With room for biodiversity and greenery. With room for innovation and new activities.
As part of its Strategic Vision 2040, Brussels Airport Company has put together a Quality Board to provide guidance to the company in the conception and design of ambitious planning projects and of the airport’s public spaces.