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SITA, the world’s leading IT provider for the air transport industry, and Palermo Falcone Borsellino International Airport have announced a new partnership to trial, over an initial four-month period, a unique solution that aims to cut airport emissions significantly.

According to one scientific study, more than 97% of local annual emissions at an airport are from flight arrivals and departures. These Scope 3 greenhouse gas emissions typically represent the largest source of emissions for most organizations. Organizations do not directly control Scope 3 emissions because they relate to the value chain; therefore, they are the most challenging scope of emissions to quantify, report and address.

SITA has developed a new emission management capability in response to these industry challenges; SITA Emissions Manager leverages the SITA Airport Management solution to enable Palermo Airport to monitor and optimize selected  Scope 3 emissions, including during landing and take-off cycles. The initiative will integrate various emission datasets to help the airport make informed decisions to drive greater efficiency in apron operations and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The trial will also assess the benefits of using SITA Emissions Manager to optimize other Scope 3 emission sources at the airport, such as aircraft turnaround and ground vehicles.

With increasing environmental pressure on aviation to take more immediate and increased action to reduce its reliance on fossil fuels, as reflected in the recent COP26 – the 2021 United Nations global climate summit – the industry is taking steps to speed up its decarbonization.

Following a strong partnership between SITA and Palermo Airport spanning more than 10 years, the launch of this new trial supports the mutual goals of both organizations. SITA has committed to supporting the air transport industry reduce its carbon footprint. Palermo Airport is decarbonizing its operations through ACI’s Airport Carbon Accreditation program. Over 2018 and 2019, the airport has already reduced its carbon emissions – from 0.71 kilograms of CO2 per passenger to 0.67 – by adopting renewable energy. The airport has set a target to reach 0.60 kg of CO2 per passenger by 2023.

Giovanni Scalia, CEO of Palermo Airport, said: “The environment and the eco-sustainable development of the airport are for us two very important topics that we intend to pursue with a series of interventions. The keyword here is ‘sustainability’, and the target is the reduction of our carbon emissions and achieving net zero by 2050 according to the resolution we signed at the 29th ACI EUROPE Annual Assembly and Congress in Cyprus. We are excited to be working with SITA to improve our emission data collection and enable us to make more informed and immediate optimization decisions.”

Sergio Colella, SITA President for Europe, said: “We are committed to working with our customers and the wider aviation community to make our industry more sustainable by helping them on their journey to decarbonize operations. With SITA’s growing portfolio of solutions for airlines and airports, we can immediately impact carbon reduction and help the industry tackle the Scope 3 emissions challenge. We are delighted to continue our partnership with Palermo Airport, which is the first airport to trial this new emission management capability.”

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