Most airports are located in open spaces, without many tall buildings around. Airports can harvest every through solar or wind power, with solar panels or wind turbines. In addition, airports can produce other biofuels through the collection of water. Although most airports aren’t able to run entirely on this energy, it can still contribute significantly to the amount of fuel and electricity it uses and cut it’s net usage down.
Some airports have either been built, or expanded with the use of recycled materials. For example, reusing steel and other strong materials, as well as environmentally friendly concrete mixed with volcanic ash.
Airports can offer rubbish bins for passengers which separates out recyclable materials from general waste. Also airports can control non-passenger waste to ensure everything that can be recycled is.
Eating a plant-based diet can help put less strain on the environment as vegan food generally requires less crops and water to produce. Therefore, airports can help cater to vegans by providing vegan options at their dining and food stores in the airport.
By switching traditional lights for LED lighting, airports can significantly reduce their energy consumption. This is just one way in which airports can do this, with other ways including reducing air conditioning or heating, or having sensor lights which only operate when someone is in the room.
Reducing air pollution to help combat pollutants in the atmosphere is another way in which airports can be greener. Taxing aircraft based on their emissions and pollutants can help reduce air pollution. Another type of pollution is noise pollution, not only important to people who live near the airport but also to local wildlife such as birds and other animals. Tracking and measuring noise pollution, and then again taxing and charging aircraft based on their pollution levels can improve noise pollution at the airport.
Stockholm Arlanda Airport is leading the way for green airports, being the first airport in Europe to achieve carbon neutrality. The airport has also capped it’s carbon emissions, meaning pollution from aircraft, vehicles and the terminal can not exceed a certain level. In addition, the airport has created a biofuel system for electricity, in which water is collected and put towards the air condition system or heating system. In total, the airport has reduced its energy use by an impressive 1/3.
You can fly to this airport with airlines such as Norwegian Air Shuttle, SAS Scandinavian Airlines, Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia and TUI fly Nordic.
As mentioned above, it is not only air pollution that airports should be trying to combat. Zurich Airport is doing many things to combat noise pollution, charging aircraft a fee based on the noise emitted from it and the effect of this pollution. In addition, the airport is taking measures to maintain water management, with efforts placed to reduce excessive water waste and using collected rainwater and aircraft deicing procedures for toilet flushing.
Edelweiss Air and Swiss International Air Lines have hubs at this airport, but you can also fly there with airlines such as Chair Airlines or easyJet.
Seattle airport is beginning its transition to biofuels, with a fuel source that is lower in carbon compared to traditional fuel jet. In addition to concerns about aircraft emissions, the airport is also working to reduce pollution from the airport terminals and also from the ground transportation, with the taxi fleet having to meet strict standards of efficiency.
Fly to this airport with airlines such as Alaska Airlines, Southwest Airlines and Delta Air Lines.
This airport has a tough goal to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by half by 2030 compared to 1990. In addition, the airport aims to be completely carbon-neutral by 2050. The airport aims to do this in many ways, including increasing solar energy production via solar panels, reducing ground transport emissions by using silent and zero-emission electric vehicles.
This airport is a hub for Eurowings but you can also fly with airlines such as Condor, Lauda, SunExpress Deutschland and Lufthansa.
This airport, located in the Galapagos Islands is also known as the Galapagos Ecological Airport and has won awards for being the “World’s First Green Airport”. This airport runs solely on its own harvested energy from the wind and the sun, with 35% coming from sun and 65% coming from wind energy. Not only is this airport great for utilising its resources in terms of energy, but the airport also converts the saline seawater into desalinated water to be used in the airports toilets and sinks in order to save water usage.
Fly to this airline with Avianca Ecuador, LATAM Ecuador or TAME, all of which fly from Quito and Guayaquil as well as some from San Cristóbal.
This Indian airport is aiming to reduce its plastic consumption and waste, with a target of 2019. This airport is one of the busiest in the world, and wants to eliminate all single-use plastics from the airport, including from food packaging, bottles, straws and cups.
Fly to this airport with airlines such as Vistara, IndiGo, Air India and SpiceJet.
In August 2019, all shops and lounges at San Francisco International Airport stopped selling plastic bottled water. The airport urges all passengers to bring their own personal reusable water bottles from home, which they can refill at the airport's many hydration stations that can be found across the airport. The removal of single-use plastic water bottles is part of San Francisco International's Zero Waste Concessions Program.
Discover what airlines are doing to be more environmentally conscious to help you choose your airport and airline wisely over on our page for eco-friendly airlines.
Apart from consciously choosing to travel to one of these eco-friendly airports, you can also choose to travel on an eco-friendly airline. In addition, on this page, we detail what actions you can take to be a more eco-friendly traveller.