Cleaner air

Cleaner air is vital to the sustainable growth of our city. We're taking action to reduce our impact on air quality by facilitating cleaner and more fuel efficient aircraft, and encouraging public transport options for travellers and staff.

Today’s modern aircraft are 70% more fuel efficient and have lower emissions than older aircraft. The next generation of aircraft is predicted to be a further 20% more fuel efficient. In 2016, 80% of our passenger growth travelled on next-generation aircraft (Airbus A380 and 787 Dreamliner).

Our proactive approach to air quality management has ensured we're responsible for less than 1% of the total pollutant emissions of Greater Sydney’s air pollution, despite the vital role we play in the Sydney, NSW and Australian transportation network.

Recent significant achievements

In recent years, we've:

  • delivered essential infrastructure worth $128 million to ensure the swift and easy introduction of cleaner, quieter and more fuel efficient aircraft at Sydney Airport such as the A380, B787 and A350 XWB
  • achieved Level 3 of the Airport Carbon Accreditation Program by mapping the sources of carbon emissions for the whole airport, reducing our own carbon footprint and engaging with our business partners to support their efforts to reduce carbon emissions
  • offset the emissions from our vehicles through Greenfleet, which plants trees to recapture carbon from the environment and promote healthy air quality
  • conducted a comprehensive air quality study, including projections of future changes in pollutant emissions, to help plan for action
  • welcomed and supported the use of sustainable transport modes, specifically public transport options and cycling to and from the airport, which will have low or zero air quality emission impacts

Future directions

We're committed to:

  • introducing a fleet of electric buses to transport passengers between the Blu Emu carpark and airport terminals, replacing diesel buses
  • increasing the use of clean energy sources, including cleaner fuels for our vehicles and equipment
  • continuing to work with stakeholders including Airservices Australia to establish ways to minimise aircraft taxiing, engine idling and unnecessary aircraft engine use
  • working with the NSW Government on proposed roadworks around the airport, which have the potential to reduce traffic congestion during peak times and cut down on air pollution. Internal road upgrades within the airport will also assist this outcome
  • installing a permanent ambient air quality monitoring station within the airport boundary and continuing to ensure air quality is considered in development proposals, both for the construction and operational phases of developments
  • ensuring all efforts are made to reduce vehicle emission impacts from airport ground vehicles, including through procurement policies, driving practices and potentially retro-fitting of older vehicles