Nanaimo Airport’s green investments making a difference

2 March 2022

Nanaimo Airport Commission’s leadership role in environmental management continues to benefit Central Island communities.

The airport’s electronic vehicle charging stations have prevented 57,888 kg of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in their first year of operation. That’s the equivalent of planting 1,484 trees and letting them grow for 10 years. It’s also the equivalent of preventing the GHG emitted by nearly eight residential homes in the region.

The four charging stations were opened to the public in January 2021. The airport provided free use of the stations as part of its ongoing commitment and investment in sustainable development.

The airport is striving to become carbon neutral in its operations. Over the last decade its many progressive programs have addressed climate change, environmental impacts, ecosystem preservation, groundwater protection, and other issues.

A few of the many measures include:

  • Greening some of its fleet of vehicles by investing in zero-emission utility task vehicles and a hybrid van.
  • Partnering with Pollinators Canada to adapt the physical environment to encourage and attract pollinating insects.
  • Removing non-native vegetation and replacing them with local and native species. This helps ensure continued carbon removal while eliminating a threat to the local eco-system.
  • Converting lighting in the Airport Operations Centre to low-energy LED.
  • Implementing eco-friendly policies covering everything from drinking water, to vegetation, to wildlife management.

Even more benefits are expected as the Commission crafts a progressive environmental management system with comprehensive sustainability plan. The project will help manage the implications of climate change. It will also be used to seek carbon accreditation by Airports Council International, the trade association of the world’s airports.

The Commission is working on the plan with environmental scientists including engineers, a hydro geologist and an eco-system health consultant. All of the firms are based in the Central Island.

The leadership team at the airport is committed to sustainable development and to creating a high performance airport. Both are essential to the region’s economic growth today and into the future.