February 7, 2024 Back to all news

daa, the operator of Dublin and Cork airports, has today unveiled details of 20 environmental sustainability initiatives being rolled out at Dublin and Cork Airports, which will accelerate both airports’ climate and sustainability related ambitions, including achieving net zero emissions by 2050 at the latest.

The projects are also matched by a planned investment of more than €400 million as part of the company’s recent Infrastructure Application to Fingal County Council, that will make operations at Dublin Airport amongst the most environmentally friendly of any peer airport in Europe. daa is committed to ensuring sustainable growth to meet Ireland's current and future international connectivity needs.

Attendees at the launch event in Dublin city centre heard what daa is doing to reduce its own (Scope 1 and Scope 2) emissions at Dublin and Cork airports, and also how the airport operator is committed to working hand-in-hand with airlines and other companies in the aviation sector to reduce the environmental impact of their operations (Scope 3 emissions). Such initiatives at Dublin Airport include a 90% reduction in carbon emissions from airside vehicles by switching from diesel to Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO); investigating on site solar; Ground Fleet Electrification; participating in government taskforces on Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF) and Hydrogen to accelerate these alternatives.

The 20 initiatives announced by daa include:

  • Making Dublin Airport diesel free, with all owned vehicles previously powered by diesel switching to Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil (HVO).
  • The light vehicle fleets at both Dublin and Cork airports being 100% electric by the end of 2024. 
  • The submission of a planning application for a 1.8 million-kilowatt solar farm at Cork Airport.
  • Improving air quality at bus stations at both Dublin and Cork airports with innovative photobioreactor technology.
  • The fast-tracking of a shared bikes project for Dublin Airport.
  • The completion of work on over 20 additional electric vehicle parking spaces at Dublin Airport. 
  • Cork Airport to upgrade its apron lighting to energy-efficient LED technology. 
  • New interventions to increase rainwater harvesting, water reuse and the earlier detection of water leaks.
  • Improvements in lighting and Ground Support Equipment (GSE), are also on the airport operator’s roadmap. 

 daa is also participating in the government’s  "Decarbonisation - Reduce Your Use" campaign, which will play a significant role in engaging all colleagues as part of initiatives being undertaken this year.

Speaking at a launch event in Dublin city centre, Kenny Jacobs, daa's CEO, expressed his enthusiasm for the sustainability initiatives, saying: "Sustainability sits at the heart of everything that daa is doing and has planned for the years ahead. The 20 projects we’re announcing details of today align with our commitment to meet Ireland's ongoing international connectivity needs while ensuring safe, efficient, and sustainable growth. With a wide range of projects already planned for this year, we are dedicated to fast-tracking our achievement of net-zero by 2050 at the latest."

Jack Chambers TD, Minister of State at the Department of Transport, welcomed daa's initiatives, saying :

“I am delighted to hear about the range of sustainability initiatives daa has planned for Dublin and Cork Airports, all of which support daa’s ambition to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. These initiatives are broad-ranging and innovative and demonstrate daa’s continued commitment to meeting their sustainability goals.”   

daa was presented with the Smarter Travel Mark by National Transport Authority at the event, which is awarded to organisations with a broad range of measures in place that support sustainable travel. daa announced earlier in the week that it has secured commitments from bus operators that they will deliver a seat for every passenger from 2024 onwards, with more than 35 million bus seats expected to be available by 2025.  

Speaking at the event alongside Kenny Jacobs and Minister Jack Chambers, were daa’s Andrea Carroll, Group Head of Sustainability; Vincent Harrison, Chief Commercial and Development Officer; and Niall MacCarthy, Managing Director of Cork Airport. 

The speakers shared a series of key presentations highlighting sustainability plans for this year at both Dublin and Cork airports, including 20 key projects and initiatives underway and planned for 2024 to progress daa’s sustainability ambitions.

Full details of daa’s sustainability activities can be found on the daa website: daa.ie/esg