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NEWS Last modified on October 13, 2011

Strategy is key to greener airports

Delegates at the third day of the Smart Airports conference in Munich were told how a manageable and achievable strategy was vital to making an airport truly sustainable and environmentally friendly.

Delegates at the third day of the Smart Airports conference in Munich were told how a manageable and achievable strategy was vital to making an airport truly sustainable and environmentally friendly.

Axel Klinge von Schultz, manager of mobility consulting at Siemens, told attendees that many airports were “missing a structured approach” to sustainability.

He argued that such an approach was a necessity, as is the implementation of a “road map towards realistic achievable targets”.

Von Schultz, urged airport operators to take a holistic view towards what was required to make their airports more environmentally friendly and sustainable, an to “identify all possibilities.”

Meanwhile, Paul Johnson, director of environmental consulting at Arup, also stressed this point adding that: “Making an airport sustainable is a journey, constantly moving it from a less sustainable state to a greater state of sustainability

“Therefore you must make sure you have a decent strategy. It sounds simple, but it is not always the case.”

Another key theme was that sustainable measures had to be driven from the top down, but also implemented throughout all levels of the workforce all the way to the frontline.

Johnson said: “Environmental initiatives must be driven from the top but also delivered on the ground.”

Olle Sundin, airport director at Swedavia operated Göteborg Landvetter Airport, added that there “must a commitment from the highest management level to the frontline. Managers must walk the talk and transform strategies into realities.”


Sundin said that at Swedavia they operate an environmental education and training programme for staff, and that issues of sustainability “must be integrated into daily operations so everybody in the organisation feels responsible, like they do for safety issues for example.”

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