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Sharjah Airport becomes first carbon neutral airport in the GCC

Sharjah Airport becomes first carbon neutral airport in the GCC

The carbon neutral status is received when net carbon dioxide emissions over a full year are zero

Sharjah Airport

Sharjah Airport has become the first carbon-neutral airport in the GCC and the second in the Middle East to attain a Level 3+ Neutrality accreditation from the Airport Carbon Accreditation programme, issued by Airports Council International (ACI), it said on Sunday.

The only other airport in the region to possess this carbon neutral status is the Queen Alia International Airport in Amman, Jordan.

The status is conferred when net carbon dioxide emissions over a full year are zero.

“By reaching carbon-neutral status, the highest status currently, in the internationally-recognised Airport Carbon Accreditation programme, Sharjah Airport is firmly positioning itself as an environmental leader in the region and beyond,” said Stefano Baronci, director general, ACI Asia-Pacific.

Meanwhile, Ali Salim Al Midfa, chairman of Sharjah Airport Authority added, “The airport has adopted many green initiatives and programs, in line with the commitment of the United Arab Emirates towards reducing carbon emissions that fall under the UAE Green Growth Strategy and to support the national agenda to attain the UAE vision 2021.”

Environmental and sustainability projects that were implemented include energy conservation initiatives, clean energy projects and circular economic initiative, the airport authorities said in a press statement.

Besides strictly monitoring electricity and water consumption in the airport, an integrated waste management system, targeted at zero landfill waste has also been introduced at the airport.

The airport received the ACI level 1 mapping in 2014, level 2 reduction in 2016 and level 3 optimization in 2018.

The airport will be presented with the Level 3+ award at the Airport Carbon Accreditation Certification Presentation ceremony at the next ACI Asia-Pacific Regional Assembly, Conference and Exhibition.

The Airport Carbon Accreditation programme is the only independent carbon standard for airports that recognises the efforts made to manage and reduce their Co2 emissions.

The emirate of Sharjah has made several other strides in its push towards clean energy and reducing waste. It reportedly diverts 76 per cent of its waste from landfills, and is targeting 100 per cent with the launch of the Sharjah Waste to Energy Facility in 2021 by the Bee’ah-Masdar joint venture, Emirates Waste to Energy Company.

Read: Bee’ah to launch Middle East’s first solar energy landfill project in Sharjah

Bee’ah also recently announced that it will convert 47 hectares of Al Saja’a landfill area in Sharjah into a solar energy facility once the landfill is capped.

The UAE Energy Strategy targets 50 per cent in clean energy by 2050 – with 44 per cent from renewables, 38 per cent from gas, 12 per cent from clean coal and 6 per cent nuclear energy.

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