Airport Greenwash !

There are a lot of stories about how airports are making savings in their energy use – which is all very commendable and excellent stuff.  We very much applaud the airport on the cuts in emissions they are making from their buildings and operations. 
 However, it tends to conveniently ignore the uncomfortable fact that the airport is in the business of increasing the numbers of flights (and passengers) which cause huge carbon emissions. Airports are able to only count their emissions on the ground, or for planes up to 1,000 metres – the landing and take off cycle. 
 Cuts in airport carbon emissions must not be used to give the impression the aviation industry is doing a lot to cut its carbon, or reduce cuts in aviation’s total emissions.
Greenwash chart
Here are some examples:
Electric cars being charged up at Birmingham airport.    14.7.2015

Spurious “Green Apple Environment Awards”. Delightful greenwash!   December 2011

Farnborough Airport recognised for cutting carbon emissions    28.6.2011

 EMA wind turbines to produce a tiny amount of the airport’s electricity   10.5.2011

Bristol Airport tries out plan for wind turbine – (to cut carbon emissions !)   23.1.2011

 Heathrow wins Carbon Trust award for being green !….   16.9.2010

Willow trees to power East Midlands airport  25.3.2010

and a bizarre one from Tesco

Tesco’s ‘flights for lights’ promotion – every little hurts    6.4.2009



BIRMINGHAM Airport has become one of the first British airports to offer fast charging for electric motorists.

14.7.2015 (AirportWorld)

Jo Lloyd, commercial director at the airport, said: “We’re always looking at new and innovative ways of improving the passenger experience at Birmingham Airport, which is why we have installed these electric charging points.

“The growing popularity of electric and hybrid cars means it is vital we provide the facilities that will enable our passengers to travel to-and-from the airport as easily as possible.

“We’re extremely proud to support this green form of energy and the obvious benefits it brings to the environment.”

It has linked up with Green energy company Ecotricity which uses 100% renewable energy from the wind and the sun, allowing 35 different models of electric and plug-in hybrid cars to recharge in between 20 and 30 minutes.

Dale Vince, found of Ecotricity, said: “Installing pumps at Birmingham Airport is the next phase of our national network which enables electric cars to drive the length and breadth of Britain.

“Now e-drivers can charge up at the airport if they’re picking up, dropping off, or on their way in and out of the country.”

[An AirportWatch member commented: “Talk about a flea on an elephant’s bum!”]