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Reducing Emissions

2020 Target: Reduce Emissions by 33% from 2012 levels
2016 Result: Emissions reduced 20%

YVR works with employees, business partners and communities to minimize vehicle, building and aircraft greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. We do this by promoting alternative forms of transportation to and from Sea Island, upgrading our fleet and improving airport infrastructure, reducing fossil fuel consumption and raising awareness of clean air practices. Additionally, we include consideration of GHG emissions as key criteria when evaluating major projects.

Every five years, we hire external consultants to conduct a detailed emissions inventory of all sources of GHGs at the airport. We measure, monitor and review emissions under two categories: direct emissions from Airport Authority-owned and controlled operations, which include heating sources and vehicle operations, as well as indirect emissions from the purchase of electricity for our operations (Scope 1 and 2); other indirect emissions from airport businesses and public sources including aircraft operations and commuter traffic on Sea Island (Scope 3).

In our Environmental Management Plan, we set an ambitious target to reduce Airport Authority emissions (relative to Scope 1 and 2) by 33 per cent in 2020 from 2012 levels. We calculate annual emissions using a methodology consistent with the Provincial Government’s framework for reporting greenhouse gas emissions, which draws on protocols established by the World Resources Institute and the Climate Registry. Under this methodology, our direct emissions were 7,720 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent units (CO2e) in 2016. This shows an encouraging trend: compared to 2007 (11,076 tonnes), we have reduced direct emissions by 30 per cent while welcoming over 27 per cent more passengers. We have also reduced direct emissions by 14 per cent over 2015 and 20 per cent over 2012—13 per cent shy of our 2020 target.

The Airport Authority has low to moderate control over Scope 3 (Sea Island) emissions, but is in a position to influence reductions in GHGs from the public and our business partners. When aircraft landing, taxiing and take-offs are included, our 2012 baseline measure is 311,304 tonnes of CO2e. Comprehensive emission inventories are performed every five years and we will update the public on the next baseline when it becomes available.

  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2020 Goal
Scope 1 emissions (tonnes of CO2e) Fleet vehicles, plant operation, emergency power 7,761 8,185 8,564 7,861 6,612  
Scope 2 emissions (tonnes of CO2e) Purchased electricity 1,852 1,322 998 1,096 1,108  
Total 9,613 9,507 9,562 8,958 7,720 6,441*

* Represents a 33% reduction over 2012 levels

Airport Carbon Accreditation

Our sustainability efforts reached a new pinnacle in 2016 when we became carbon accredited through Airports Council International (ACI) and its Airport Carbon Accreditation program. As the only independent, institutionally endorsed global standard for carbon management at airports, this program provides four levels needed to reach carbon neutrality: mapping, reduction, optimization and neutrality. We entered the program at Reduction Level 2 accreditation, due to our strong efforts in measuring our carbon footprint and making significant steps towards reducing emissions each year. To achieve this certification, ACI verified our carbon footprint in accordance with the greenhouse gas accounting protocol ISO 14064.

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