Sydney Airport outlines plan to achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030

Photo: © Kurt Ams

Sydney Airport has announced it will achieve net zero carbon emissions by 2030 and outlined the practical initiatives and actions that will ensure it meets this commitment.

“The aviation industry has a critical role to play in combatting climate change, and we are making this commitment with clear line of sight to the outcome, and definite actions to get there,” Sydney Airport CEO Geoff Culbert said.

“Sydney Airport is proud of the leadership position we’ve taken on sustainability. We’ve put our money where our mouth is through initiatives like our sustainability-linked loan and bond, which ensure our sustainability commitments have genuine financial imperatives.

“We are always on the lookout for ways we can do more and our commitment to achieve net zero by 2030 extends our leadership on sustainability.”

The commitment to achieve net zero by 2030 incorporates all emissions under Sydney Airport’s operational control. This comprises both ‘Scope 1’ emissions that are generated by the Airport’s vehicle fleet and natural gas use, and ‘Scope 2’ emissions, representing the emissions created during the production of the Airport’s electricity needs.

The Airport’s Scope 2 emissions, which represent 93 per cent of emissions under the Airport’s operational control, will be eliminated by reducing electricity use and switching to 100 per cent renewable energy.

Scope 1 emissions account for 7 per cent of the emissions under the Airport’s operational control and will be reduced by moderating reliance on natural gas, transitioning vehicles to low or no-emission technology, and phasing out fuel-powered equipment like diesel generators.

Sydney Airport will continue its program to target indirect ‘Scope 3’ emissions, which represent those that are outside the Airport’s operational control but occur as a result of the Airport’s activities. These include the carbon emissions generated by ground transport to and from the Airport and by aircraft taking off and landing.

“Climate change is a global challenge that requires a collective response,” said Alicia Burgmann, Sydney Airport’s Head of Sustainability.

“The aviation industry is alive to the challenge and we are really proud to be playing our part.”