India's Cochin International Airport is now the first in the world to be powered solely on solar energy. It was announced this week that 46,000 solar panels near the airport's cargo complex would make the airport 'absolutely power neutral.' The green initiative will produce between 50 and 60,000 units of electricity a day, and over the next 25 years is set to have the impact of planting three million trees.
India's Cochin International Airport is now the first in the world to be powered solely on solar energy
It was announced this week the 46,000 solar panels near the airport's cargo complex would make the airport 'absolutely power neutral'
A reduction of 300,000 tons of carbon emissions is expected over the next 25 years, according to a statement by the airport. 'When we had realised that the power bill is on the higher side, we contemplated possibilities,' said V.J.Kurian, Managing Director of Cochin International Airport.
'Then the idea of green power came in. We consume 48000 units (KWh) a day. 'So if we can produce the same, that too by strictly adhering to the green and sustainable development model that we always follow, that would transcend a message to the world. 'Now this has become the world's first airport fully operates on solar power.' The airport first starting using solar panels in 2013, when it installed them on the Arrival Terminal block. The project was expanded to create a larger instalment and finally plans were agreed for the new giant solar patch to be created.
The green initiative will produce between 50 and 60 thousand units of electricity a day, and over the next 25 years is set to have the impact of planting three million trees
The airport's parent company, Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL), plans to sell energy produced to Kerela State electricity board. This is due to the installation being part of a grid connect system without any battery storage, so a power banking module has been established with the electricity board, During the night, the airport will have the option to buy back any electricity it needs from the board. Located in Kochi, the airport saw 6.8 million passengers through its terminals in the 2014-15 financial year.
And following the rebuilding, 80 per cent of materials used were recycled from the previous infrastructure Cochin International Airport isn't the only one in the world to have gone eco-friendly. Baltra Airport in the Galapagos Islands is run entirely on power gained from the sun and wind. And following the rebuilding, 80 per cent of materials used were recycled from the previous infrastructure. The Ecuadorian airport has been hailed by environmentalists who are keen to preserve the Galapagos' eco-system in the face of increased tourism. Speaking to Euronews, airport manager Jorge Rocillo said: 'The main thing is that it is a sustainable building, a public building that can balance technology and comfort for passengers without polluting the environment. 'This is basically the legacy we want to give,' he added.