Although small by comparison to the footprint of our aircraft fleet, our building operations and ground support equipment (GSE) fleet (tugs, beltloaders, forklifts, etc.) contribute to our overall carbon emissions, which can be significantly reduced with smarter facility management. In fact, many of our employees themselves have stepped up to the cause by initiating conservation programs at our facilities across the country. Alaska Airlines believes that grassroots programs, at the local level, have a huge impact on the overall effectiveness of our conservation programs, and encourages these types of programs from the ground up.
The Nome wind turbine/solar panel array is just one example of how Alaska Airlines is pioneering efforts to reduce its energy footprint.
One example of our commitment to building and operating more sustainable facilities can be found at our Nome airport.
In September 2011, Alaska Airlines completed a first-of-its-kind wind turbine/solar installation at our Nome Airport facility The project is anticipated to provide 6% of the facility's annual electricity needs. This project is intended as a test bed to determine the feasibility of pursuing alternative energy projects at our other terminals in Alaska.
The majority of our facilities are leased from local airports, but in locations where we own and operate offices, terminals, cargo facilities, and/or maintenance buildings, our 5-year-plan is to renovate many of these existing buildings with new lighting, heating systems, and building insulation that improves energy efficiency while reducing costs and emissions. We're incorporating LEED principles into all of our standard facilities projects.
Current Energy Conservation Projects Include:
- Alaska Airlines Seattle Corporate Headquarters: HVAC Upgrade
Upgrading and replacing the heating, ventilation and air conditioning system will reduce the building energy usage by an estimated 20%. This will reduce our carbon footprint by approximately 170 tons per year and save $27,000 annually in energy costs.
- Horizon Air Seattle Corporate Headquarters: Lighting Retrofit
Changing out older lighting fixtures with newer, more energy-efficient replacements is expected to reduce electricity usage by 38% each month and provide a $6,000/year cost savings. In one years time it will also prevent 68,000 lbs of CO2 from being released into the environment -- similar to taking 5 cars off the road each day.
- LAX Board Room: LEED Certification Design
Our new Terminal 6 expansion project at LAX features a sustainably-designed Board Room with LEED Silver Certification.