In a remarkable move, the US now has an airport in Tennessee that operates entirely on renewable energy. This is the first of its kind in the country, reports Lonely Planet.
Chattanooga Airport celebrated the completion of the final phase of its solar farm. This farm consists of rows upon rows of photovoltaic panels across 12 acres. It generates a total of 2.64 megawatts of electricity which is enough to support the airport’s total energy needs.
Terry Hart, president and CEO of Chattanooga Airport said, “This is a momentous day for the Chattanooga Airport as we complete our solar farm and achieve a major sustainability milestone.” He added,
“This project has immediate benefits to our airport and community, and we’re proud to set an example in renewable energy for other airports, businesses and our region. While generating a local renewable resource, we are also increasing the economic efficiency of the airport.”
Other sustainable measures taken up by Chattanooga Airport
Solar power isn’t the only sustainable measure the airport has taken up. In a bid to reduce its carbon footprint, they have adopted other green initiatives like multiple LED-certified facilities, a storm-water system, green infrastructure and electric car charging stations. TVA and EPB both contributed to the airport’s efforts to bring the solar farm online. This was made possible by Federal Aviation Administration funding, specifically Voluntary Airport Low Emission and Energy Efficiency grants.
While Chattanooga Airport is the only airport in the US to fully operate on renewable energy, other airports are incorporating solar facilities. Some examples are Honolulu’s Daniel K. Inouye International Airport, Denver International Airport and Indianapolis International Airport, which has the largest solar farm in the US.
Also Read: Airports in Dubai Will Soon Be Solar-Powered
Other airports functioning on renewable energy
Around the world, there are several airports that operate entirely on renewable energy. Cochin International Airport in the southern Indian state of Kerala uses 100% renewable energy. It became the first airport in the world to do so in 2015. It was followed by Seymour Airport in the Galapagos. In the Netherlands, Amsterdam Schiphol and Rotterdam function on wind power. In South Africa, George Airport is the first solar-powered airport. In England, Gatwick (London) gets 100% of its electricity needs from solar power.