Aviation

Moroccan airports chart course for better carbon management at COP22

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MARRAKESH, MOROCCO – Building on last year’s COP21, where new global targets to limit climate change were agreed during last year’s climate negotiations, the next round of these talks – COP22 – has just been completed in Marrakesh, Morocco.

During a special ceremony at the event, Marrakesh-Menara and Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca became certified at the ‘Mapping’ level of Airport Carbon Accreditation the global carbon standard for the airport industry.

The Airport Carbon Accreditation programme certifies airports at 4 different levels of accreditation covering all stages of carbon management (1. Mapping, 2. Reduction, 3. Optimisation and 3+. Neutrality). It is independently administered, institutionally-endorsed? and has the support of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), the European Commission (EC) and others.

Ali Tounsi, Regional Director of ACI Africa commented “We are delighted to see the airport of Marrakesh-Menara and Mohammed V International Airport in Casablanca enter Airport Carbon Accreditation – it is great to welcome airports from Morocco into the programme, especially while the country is hosting the COP22. It is always good to see new entrants embarking on the journey of better carbon management and we will continue doing everything we can to support them, through the knowledge exchange that comes with being part of this programme – the airport industry’s collective effort to lower its contribution to climate change. This is all the more important as airport climate action also supports the achievement of several UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – which are of key importance to Africa.”

“We are very encouraged to see these 2 airports embark on a strategy to reduce their carbon emissions. Their proactivity underlines how better carbon management can gain ground here in Africa, in parallel to advancing in other parts of the world” said Niclas Svenningsen, who heads the Climate Neutral Now initiative at the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Secretariat in Bonn, Germany.

Mr. Zouhair Mohammed El Aoufir, CEO of Morrocan Airports Authority (ONDA), operator of airports in Casablanca and Marrakesh said “We are pleased to receive today this first level of accreditation which validates ONDA’s approach in the management of Greenhouse gas emissions from the two biggest airports in Morocco – in terms of traffic, these airports also represent 6.7% of the African continent’s air traffic. With this voluntary action we demonstrate our sincere commitment to reducing the environmental impact of our activities.”

Carbon Neutral Airports
At last year’s COP21, the European airport industry pledged to have 50 carbon neutral airports by 2030. In the past year, 5 more airports in Europe have reached that goal, bringing the total number in Europe to 25. In addition, in the past 3 months, Dallas Fort Worth Airport has become the first carbon neutral airport in North America and Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport, the first carbon neutral airport in Asia.

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