The aim of the EU project dAIR is to transform airports into environmentally sustainable transport hubs. Swedavia and Stockholm Arlanda Airport are one of its role models.
“Effective environmental and sustainability work is simply a question of survival for airports,” says Fredrik Jaresved, head of public affairs at Stockholm Arlanda Airport.
Right now airport directors, environmental experts and political leaders from across Europe are attending a dAIR project meeting in Switzerland under the direction of Emmanuelle Maire of the European Commission. The challenge is to reduce fossil carbon dioxide emissions from transport to and from EU airports as well as from the airports’ own operations. Today these account for almost half of the airports’ emissions, with air traffic accounting for the rest.
Fredrik Jaresved, head of public affairs at Stockholm Arlanda, is one of the main speakers.
“The work of Sweden and Stockholm Arlanda is at the cutting edge in Europe. At Stockholm Arlanda, emissions have been reduced by almost 70 per cent since 2005. And more than 50 per cent of passengers today take mass transit to and from the airport,” he says.
At dAIR he and Swedavia are also presenting the world’s first biogas-driven snow removal vehicle. Once all of the biogas vehicles are in place, it means Swedavia will reach its target of zero fossil carbon dioxide emissions from its own operations. Swedavia has ordered 29 such vehicles, with 8 being delivered this year. The vehicles will run on as much as 90 per cent biogas, with the remainder environmentally sustainable diesel. The biogas project will initially be carried out this winter at Stockholm Arlanda and Åre Östersund Airports.
“Being at the cutting edge in terms of environmental and sustainability work is absolutely necessary for our credibility and future potential as an airport operator. So it is great that we are seen as a role model in Europe;” Mr Jaresved notes.
dAIR is an EU-financed project aimed at reducing carbon dioxide emissions from the European transport sector. Through greater cooperation between the union’s different regions, best practices will be identified and implemented elsewhere in the EU.