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Monday, July 15, 2024

Mactan airport aiming for zero net emissions by 2050

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The Mactan-Cebu International Airport (MCIA), managed by Aboitiz InfraCapital GMCAC, is embarking on an ambitious journey toward sustainable airport operations.

Following its Level 1 Airport Carbon Accreditation recognition, MCIA is setting the stage for more groundbreaking environmental initiatives to achieve a net zero target by 2050.

Net zero refers to reducing carbon emissions to a small amount of residual levels that can be absorbed and durably stored by nature, as well as other carbon dioxide removal measures, leaving zero in the atmosphere.

The award-winning airport plans to utilize more bridge-mounted pre-conditioned air (PCA) and ground power units (GPUs) to replace motorized GPUs and auxiliary PUs while aircraft are parking and boarding passengers, use electric ground support equipment and other airside vehicles, as well as expand the airport’s existing solar power plant in other areas of the airport.

“Achieving Net Zero emissions is not just about reducing our carbon footprint; it’s about ensuring that our impact on the environment is effectively neutralized, leaving a sustainable legacy for future generations,” said Athanasios Titonis, MCIA president and chief executive officer.

The landmark Level I Airport Carbon Accreditation from the Airports Council International, a first in the Philippines, reflects MCIA’s comprehensive approach to carbon management and highlights the proactive steps taken to reduce its carbon emissions.

These include installing a rooftop solar power plant and energy-efficient equipment such as LED (light-emitting diode) lights, regularly monitoring electricity and fuel consumption, and conducting emission tests for ground support equipment and emergency generators.

MCIA’s journey towards accreditation continued with a rigorous evaluation of its carbon management practices. Embracing the ACA framework, MCIA undertook a thorough assessment of its operations, aligning with the program’s six levels of certification, each representing a distinct stage in the carbon management journey.

MCIA also released a policy commitment to emissions reduction, a public written commitment to greenhouse gas, carbon, or energy reduction at the highest level in the form of a policy statement signed by MCIA Authority (MCIAA) CEO and general manager Julius Neri Jr.

MCIA also developed a Carbon Footprint Report covering 2022 data, a key component of the ACA. By setting operational boundaries, Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions from MCIAA and Aboitiz InfraCapital GMCAC were identified and quantified to determine the total carbon emissions generated by MCIA operations.

“Securing Level 1 ACA underscores our unwavering dedication to sustainable aviation practices. It validates our efforts to minimize our carbon footprint and sets a model for airports in the country and even across the region to follow,” Titonis said.

MCIA remains steadfast in its commitment to advancing sustainability initiatives and looks forward to further collaboration with stakeholders and partners while continuously enhancing the customer experience.

MCIA recently announced that it is transitioning to become a ‘silent airport’–a practice also followed by airports worldwide, like Singapore Changi Airport and Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. This is characterized by the minimal or complete absence of background noise, such as repetitive announcements over loudspeakers.

The transition is designed to mitigate noise pollution and foster a serene atmosphere for travelers.


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