The 6 most environmentally friendly airports

These environmentally friendly airports are breaking new ground when it comes to sustainability.

Here's all you need to know about Vienna International Airport. Image credit: NicoElNino/iStock
There are airports around the world making sustainable changes to how they run. Image credit: NicoElNino/iStock

Sustainability in the travel sector is steadily growing. More and more travelers are valuing organizations that are focused on improving their environmental footprint.

At Blacklane, we’ve committed to becoming a net-zero carbon emissions enterprise by 2040. Currently, we’re on track to achieving this goal long beforehand. 

We were also the first ride service to become certified as a carbon offset organization. So, when you download the Blacklane app, you can rest easy knowing every ride you book is 100 percent carbon offset

Here’s a list of airports around the world that are also taking sustainable action towards building a better future for tomorrow.

Galápagos Ecological Airport, Ecuador

Sitting within one of the most environmentally important regions in the world, it should come as no surprise this airport has made the environmentally friendly airports list.

However, building a sustainable airport is not without its challenges. Construction of the airport had to be completed on Ecuador’s mainland because of the island’s Heritage status.

The airport became a true masterpiece in sustainability when it was completed in 2012.

It’s built to run solely on solar and wind power. Out of the materials used, 80 percent were recycled – including steel pipes from the oil extraction fields in the Ecuadorian Amazon.

The site features a desalination plant that captures seawater and purifies it for use in the terminal. The airport also has mechanical shutters that open and close in reaction to the building’s heat levels.

Boston Logan International Airport, U.S.

Terminal A at Boston’s Logan International was the first air terminal to be accredited an LEED Certification for Environmental Sustainability by the U.S. Green Building Council in 2010.

The terminal’s flooring and roofing is made up of materials that reflect excess heat from the building. It also has a low-flow water fixtures in place to save water.

There’s also a number of 6-foot-tall wind turbines that sit above the airport offices, which contribute to the airport’s energy supply.

If you need to book an airport transfer from Boston Airport, Blacklane chauffeured vehicles are 100 percent carbon offset, so you can travel with peace of mind.

Stockholm Arlanda Airport, Sweden

Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport was the first European airport to achieve carbon offset more than a decade ago, and it’s showing no signs of slowing down its sustainability progress.

The airport set a cap on its carbon dioxide emissions, so as not to exceed levels set in 1990. This has in turn led to some inventive processes.

The airport uses a biofuel system to heat its terminals and airfield buildings. Water is collected from an underground aquifer to run through its air-conditioning systems in summer.

The airport is also shifting to 100 percent fossil-free diesel for all its vehicles.

Denver International Airport, U.S.

Aerial view of DEN. Image credit: Denver International Airport
Aerial view of DEN. Image credit: Denver International Airport

An environmentally friendly airport list isn’t complete without mentioning Denver International Airport. The airport’s focus on sustainable energy is impressive. It houses the largest solar power farm at a commercial airport within the U.S. 

It’s also collaborating with a few different companies to improve parts of its service. Alongside recycling company Teracycle, the airport is collecting and recycling cigarettes across its smoking areas.

The airport is participating in a pilot program to create an on-site battery storage facility. This would help to back up its train system. It’s expected the batteries will be charged by the on-site solar farms.

Tons of food items and forgotten luggage and strollers are also donated to the Denver Rescue Mission each year.

Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, U.S.

Another U.S. airport turning heads in the sustainability sector is Dallas Fort Worth for its commitment to net zero carbon by 2030.

Since 2010, the airport has seen an 83 percent reduction in carbon emissions per passenger. Since 2016, it’s been carbon offset accredited.

More than one third of the fuel used in its fleet vehicles is renewable, with nine electric vehicle charging stations across its site.

But, the airport is also giving back at a community level. In 2019, the airport partnered with Dallas County Community College to set up the first airport apprenticeship program in Texas.

Rome Fiumicino Airport, Italy

Rome’s Fiumicino Airport is dedicated to recycling and creating a closed loop system for its waste.

The airport is building a composting facility to process up to 1000t/year of food waste from its terminal restaurants and bars. The compost will then be used to nurture the airport’s green spaces.

Wastewater is processed in the airport’s biological treatment plant to be recycled back into its system.

The airport’s natural gas cogeneration power station powers 98 percent of the airport electrical requirements.

Within the next few years, the airport plans to become completely plastic-free.