Four Kenyan airports are the first airports in East and Central Africa to achieve level 1 (mapping) accredited airport under ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation program, committing the facilities to reduce their carbon emissions, with the ultimate goal of achieving carbon neutrality.
Managed by the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA), Jomo Kenyatta International Airport , Moi International Airport, Kisumu International Airport and Eldoret international Airports have joined the Airport Carbon Accreditation programme, achieving Level 1 “Mapping” accreditation.
This is in line with KAA’s going green initiative launched in 2019 with a goal of becoming the greenest airport operator in Africa by 2022. The initiative also configures with the authority’s 2018-2022 strategic plan which highlight’s environmental stewardship as one of its main strategic areas with a goal of obtaining ISO 14001-2015: Environmental Management System (EMS) Standard.
“Minimizing the effects of our operations on the environment is a core ambition for us at KAA. We believe that contributing to efforts to counter climate change is our responsibility to future generations. Joining the Airport Carbon Accreditation Program is a significant step in the right direction for our main airports, as the programme provides a solid framework to optimize and, eventually, minimize emissions.” KAA Managing Director Alex Gitari said, while commenting on the accreditation.
Airport Carbon Accreditation is the global standard for carbon management in the airport industry. It aims to encourage and enable airports and its stakeholders to implement best practices in Greenhouse Gas (GHG) management and achieve emission reductions, by providing a common framework for active carbon management, utilizing measurable goals.
The Airport Carbon Accreditation programme of ACI was launched in 2009. Initially had 4 Levels- “Level 1: Mapping”, “Level 2: Reduction”, “Level 3: Optimisation” and “Level 3+ Neutrality”. Level 3+, (Neutrality) was the highest level of accreditation at that time.
In 2020, ACI revised the program’s Levels and added two new levels, Level 4 (Transformation) and Level 4+ (Transition). These two Levels have been introduced to make the programme objectives in line with Paris Agreement and to limit the increase of global average temperature to 2°C above pre-industrial levels and aim to not exceed 1.5°C.
This is also in line with IPCC’s recommendations & ICAO’s Aviation Climate Change mitigation objectives. Level 4+ encourages airports to reduce their emissions as per the latest scientific developments and meet to stakeholder expectations.
By Victor Shalton Odhiambo