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Saving CO2 at the airport - the LAirA project comes to an end

Dec 20, 2019

The environmental impact of airports quickly brings to mind the CO2 emissions generated by the operation of aircraft. However, the arrival and departure of employees and passengers, often by car, also accounts for a significant proportion of these emissions.

Over the last two years, AustriaTech and its partners in the LAirA (Landside Airport Accessibility) project have been investigating ways to reduce the CO2 emissions of passengers and employees of European airports caused by arrivals and departures.

Participating project partners were municipalities, cities, airports and agencies from seven regions: Vienna, Budapest, Warsaw, Milan, Stuttgart, Dubrovnik and Poznan. These regions have joined forces to make the mobility behaviour of their passengers (60 million) and employees (40,000) more environmentally friendly. The LAirA partners have focused on three areas: Carpooling, awareness raising campaigns for employees and a routing application for passengers. A total of seven pilot projects were carried out and the results exchanged between the project partners and airports to facilitate joint learning.

Carpooling for employees

The private car is still playing a central role in arriving at and departing from European airports. The challenges involved in converting employee mobility to environmentally friendly forms of mobility were addressed by three carpooling pilots. In cooperation with the existing carpooling platform Oszkar, Budapest Airport has provided carpooling to bundle employee trips. The pilot will continue beyond the project term until the end of 2020. 

At Modlin Airport, near Warsaw, a carpooling platform was also implemented together with the local provider By the Way. Due to the small size of the airport and the fact that even without the platform, around one third of employees already share their journey, the airport decided to focus more on sensitization and awareness raising.

A carpooling platform was introduced at the two Milan airports Linate and Malpensa in cooperation with the local company Jojob. Even at the two major Milan airports, employee participation is a challenge. To date, around 240 shared trips have been counted. In order to attract even more employees in the future, additional information campaigns will be implemented and the pilot will be extended until summer 2020.

The mobility change begins in the mind

Awareness and, above all, knowledge about environmentally friendly mobility options is an essential factor in the conversion of employee mobility. As part of the LAirA project, awareness campaigns were implemented at three airports. Poznan Airport in Poland has worked closely with employees to develop ideas for lower CO2 emissions when travelling to and from work. The results from the working group are being incorporated into further strategy documents and as one of the next steps a conventional bus line is to be converted to electric operation.

Dubrovnik Airport has focused on soft mobility. With the "Bike to Work" campaign and the trenchant slogan "Burn fat, not oil", employees were motivated to cycle to work. In addition, a broad communication campaign was set up with print and social media activities, videos and promotional articles, which led to a broad perception of the campaign.

A series of workshops at Stuttgart Airport sensitized employees to environmentally friendly travel to and from work. In addition, the results of the workshops will be used for further activities that are in line with the airport's „Fairport“ strategy.

Environmentally friendly passenger mobility

For a more environmentally friendly passenger mobility, the app of the two Milan airports Linate and Malpensa has been enhanced by integrating routing information from private and public transport operators across traffic modes into the existing app. This allows passengers to view the travel options and their environmental impact. In addition, the CO2 emissions per option are listed. The function can be viewed in the "Milan App" and as a web application. Over 3,100 users have already been registered in one month and in the future the app will be expanded with additional functions such as real-time information and in-door navigation.

In the LAirA project, seven pilots developed measures for more environmentally friendly arrival and departure options at airports. The results are published on the project homepage and are a first step towards environmentally friendly mobility at airports.

 

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