In March 2019, Copenhagen Airport launched its climate strategy. The strategy, which adheres to the global Airport Carbon Accreditation standard, features the commitment to becoming CO2-neutral in 2019. The CO2 neutrality has been fully achieved by firstly reducing the Airport’s own emissions through various initiatives and secondly, by buying carbon credits from a CO2-reducing project. The airport will, however, continue to work on eliminating its own CO2 emissions in the near term.
Based on NIRAS’ experience in designing and implementing climate strategies, the Airport requested its advisory services on how to structure a CO2 offsetting model and its practical implementation. For this instance, the NIRAS team applied a methodology in which clean energy projects are used to compensate for CO2 emissions.
Extensive tender process executed
Emelie Öhlander and Morten Pedersen from NIRAS supported the entire process concerning CO2 offsetting. Their activities included identifying and engaging interested clean energy project developers, NGOs and Airport Carbon Accreditation, an international voluntary accreditation system for airports.
Building on this initial step, the NIRAS team developed the requirements for high-quality projects suitable for CO2 offsetting, which also aligned with the expectations and needs of Copenhagen Airport. In close cooperation with the Airport, a major tender process for candidate projects was conducted. Following analysis of the project bids and their capacity for carbon offsetting, NIRAS made its recommendation to Copenhagen Airport, which recently entered into an agreement with NEXUS, an international NGO specialized in Southeast Asia.
Energy-efficient cookstoves in Laos
Copenhagen Airport will achieve its CO2-neutral goals through a project that distributes energy-efficient cookstoves in Laos. The project will be of particular benefit to the climate as each energy-efficient cookstove consumes 40 percent less fuel as compared to the use of the previous primitive cookstoves or simply cooking on an open fire. The new cookstoves provide a smaller CO2 discharge as well as a better economy for families in Laos. In the case of the Airport’s project, more than 270,000 energy-efficient cookstoves have already been sold.
In April 2019, NIRAS conducted a due diligence of the project in Laos. Our climate experts anticipate that a growing number of companies will follow Copenhagen Airport’s example. Companies with large carbon footprints can require significant investments to meet their climate and sustainability goals. However, it can take years before they are implemented; therefore CO2 offsetting provides an optimal pathway to achieving immediate and lasting CO2 reductions.
It was exciting to participate in a process where a large company takes the responsibility powering a development towards less CO2 emissions. In particular it was exciting to work with CO2 offsetting as we still have limited experience with this in Denmark.