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by Neha Swaminathan | 28-10-2015 02:02 recommendations 0

I have seen nice articles from my fellow ambassadors in UAE on the subject of Climate Change mitigation. So I wished to take a different aspect of this topic. I have read that Air travel is one of the most carbon negative activities adding to global warming. UAE has a lot of incoming and outgoing air traffic.

So, at a time when the number of air passengers is increasing, it is essential that more and more airports achieve Airport Carbon Accreditation. This program recognizes and accredits the efforts of airports to manage and reduce their carbon emissions. There are four levels of certification: Mapping, Reduction, Optimization & Neutrality.


It is creditable to note that Abudhabi, Sharjah and Dubai Airports have already been accredited in UAE and they have to scale higher levels in the accreditation system.


Airport Carbon Accreditation is an independent programme administered by WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, an international consultancy appointed by ACI EUROPE to enforce the accreditation criteria for airports on an annual basis. The administration of the programme is overseen by an Advisory Board.


In November 2011, Airport Carbon Accreditation was extended to Asia-Pacific, in cooperation with ACI Asia-Pacific. In June 2013, the programme was extended to Africa in cooperation with ACI Africa.


Airport Carbon Accreditation took off in North America and in November 2014 the programme went global with its extension to airports in Latin America and the Caribbean.


Mapping: The Mapping step of Airport Carbon Accreditation requires carbon footprint measurement.

To achieve this level of accreditation, an airport has to determine its operational boundary and the emissions sources within that as defined by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol, calculate the annual carbon emissions for the previous year for those sources, compile a carbon footprint report and get it verified by an auditor.

Reduction: The Reduction step requires carbon management and progress towards a reduced carbon footprint.

To achieve this level of accreditation, an airport has to set carbon emission control targets and prove that a reduction in the carbon footprint has occurred in consecutive years. The airport has to show a low carbon/low energy policy, appoint a senior committee for climate change/ carbon/ energy matters, monitor consumption of fuel & energy, undertakes awareness training about emissions for staff and reach set targets.



Optimization: The Optimization step of Airport Carbon Accreditation requires third party engagement in carbon footprint reduction. Third parties include airlines and various service providers, for example, independent ground handlers, catering companies, air traffic control and others working on the airport site. It also involves engagement on surface access modes (road, rail) with authorities and users. Scope 3 emissions to be measured include, landing and take-off cycle emissions, surface access to the airport for passengers and staff, staff business travel emissions

Neutrality: The Neutrality step of Airport Carbon Accreditation requires neutralizing remaining direct carbon emissions by offsetting. Carbon neutrality is when the net carbon dioxide emissions over an entire year is zero (i.e. the airport absorbs the same amount of carbon dioxide as it produces). Achieving carbon neutrality for an airport is in almost all cases impossible without external help. For this reason, airports, among many other industries, look to carbon offsetting as the final part of the solution. Carbon offsetting is providing funds or resources to other projects that reduce carbon dioxide so as to make up for the emissions that one is not able to eliminate. 


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  • Dormant user Neha Swaminathan
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  • Luiz Bispo says :
    That is really a great news from the UEA airport. Thanks a lot for sharing. Keep it up! =)
    Posted 29-10-2015 12:38

  • Rohan Kapur says :
    Thanks Neha for reporting about Airport Carbon Accreditation. The airports in UAE are doing really well to mitigate the climate change.
    Posted 28-10-2015 20:19

  • Arushi Madan says :
    Thank you Neha for reporting a different aspect of UAE's efforts towards mitigating climate change. It may be good economy wise that air traffic influx and outflux is increasing but the bitter fact is that it is leaving massive carbon footprint. Glad to know about Airport Carbon Accreditation program and the fact that Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Shj airports are progressing well. Thanks for a very informative report.
    Posted 28-10-2015 18:04

  • says :
    Yeah the number of air passengers is increasing each day and Airport Carbon Accreditation would be significant in reducing the emission from air transport. Happy to know that three airports have already achieved it and hope more airports apply this concept. Thank you dear Neha for detail report regarding the steps in Airport Carbon Accreditation :)
    Posted 28-10-2015 11:34

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