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SFO Receives 2017 Acterra Award for Sustainability

Airport honored with top award for all-encompassing environmental achievements 

Acterra, a non-profit organization in Silicon Valley dedicated to the promotion of a healthy and sustainable planet, has announced the selection of the San Francisco International Airport (SFO) for their top sustainability award for 2017, the Acterra Business Environmental Award.  In the Large Organization category, SFO was honored with the Acterra Award for Sustainability.  In its announcement, Acterra cited SFO as a nationally-recognized sustainability leader in the aviation industry for its history of climate action and sustainability reporting.

Acterra Executive Director Adam Stern said, “At a time when environmental policy is being challenged at the federal level, these award winners send a powerful message that Bay Area companies, public agencies, and schools remain committed to cleaner, healthier, and more sustainable business practices.  Acterra is proud to recognize the achievements of these innovative organizations.”

“As an industry leader in sustainability efforts, we continue to set aggressive goals for our contributions to the environment, including targets to achieve zero emissions, zero waste and zero net energy,” said Airport Director Ivar C. Satero.  “We are truly honored to be recognized by the respected staff of Acterra for our achievements.”

Despite its status as one of the fastest-growing airports in the United States, SFO has achieved significant success in reducing its carbon footprint.  Since 1990, the Airport has reduced greenhouse gas emissions from airport-controlled operations by 38%, already far exceeding a City and County of San Francisco goal of 25% reduction by 2017.  SFO has also reduced energy consumption by almost 11,000 megawatt-hours per year, and improved 558 acres of wetlands throughout the Bay Area.

Reduction strategies have included:

  • Installation of air conditioning and electrical power to all parked aircraft, resulting in a reduction of 18,300 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions and saving 1,866,000 gallons of jet fuel1
  • Construction of the AirTrain, an electric-powered light rail system which eliminated over 600 daily bus trips to shuttle passengers between terminals and the Rental Car Center
  • Creation of a Clean Vehicle Policy to promote the adoption and deployment of energy efficient vehicles, by both Airport departments and ground transportation providers
  • Programs to encourage airport employees to take public transit to and from work

1 FY2010 data

SFO has been recognized on multiple occasions for contributions in the field of environmental sustainability.  In 2013 Airports Council International (ACI), the foremost advocate for airport operators worldwide, recognized SFO for its Climate Action Plan, which outlines a variety of efforts intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions related to airport operations.  The following year, ACI honored SFO for its Recovery Action Plan, which ensures the protection of two endangered species on a 180-acre undeveloped area of the Airport.  In 2016, SFO was awarded Level 3 Airport Carbon Accreditation by ACI, becoming the first airport in California and only the second in North America certified at this level. For more information, please visit: www.flysfo.com/environment/overview .

The Acterra Business Environmental Awards is one of the San Francisco Bay Area’s oldest and most prestigious environmental recognition programs.  Initiated in 1990, it is highly regarded among award programs due to its rigorous application and judging process.

San Francisco International Airport will be honored at the 2017 Acterra Business Environmental Awards Ceremony & Reception on Wednesday, May 24th from 6-9 pm at Intuit Corporation in Mountain View.  For complete information about the 2017 awardees and ceremony, visit www.acterra.org/bea.

About Acterra: Action for a Healthy Planet
Acterra is a San Francisco Bay Area 501(c)(3) nonprofit based in Palo Alto that brings people together to create local solutions for a healthy planet.  Acterra focuses on what you can do locally to address current environmental problems.  In the face of daunting environmental challenges, Acterra’s science-based approach instills hope while building community.  For more information, visit www.acterra.org.