Lufthansa has a tradition of leading its industry in technology, quality, and sustainability. The airline’s first report on environmental issues dates back to 1994. Just as combining our corporate colors blue and yellow creates green, environmental care has become an integral part of our management and corporate culture.
We would like to inform you regularly and show one concrete example of Lufthansa's environmental care activities. Today:
TaxiBot taxies aircraft with turned-off engines to runway
With TaxiBot (NB) Lufthansa takes another step towards becoming more environmentally friendly. This hybrid-electric aircraft tractor can move the aircraft between the gate and the runway while the aircraft’s engines remain turned-off.
A special nose wheel cradle in the TaxiBot registers all the steering movements and transfers these to navigate the tractor’s eight wheels. This enables the pilot to steer the tractor from the cockpit using “Pilot Control Mode” after pushing back from the gate, until it is released at the runway. The aircraft engines are not required to start up until the TaxiBot is separated from the aircraft.
This does not only result in a lower fuel demand, but also reduces exhaust emissions and noise at the airport. At Lufthansa’s Frankfurt hub TaxiBot might be able to save up to 2,700 tonnes of fuel on long-haul flights per year and Lufthansa is already planning ahead. On February 20, 2015 a memorandum of understanding between Lufthansa LEOS and IAI was signed for wide body aircraft certification testing.
The TaxiBot is part of the “E-PORT AN” project at Frankfurt Airport. Partners of the initiative include the state of Hesse, Fraport AG, the Lufthansa Group and the Rhine-Main model region. As part of this project electric mobility ventures for the future are realised in order to make towing procedures for aircraft and ground vehicles more environmentally friendly. The projects are supported by the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure.
Striving for sustainability by building green
Lufthansa Group aims at bringing sustainability into all areas of its business. This includes conservation of natural resources in corporate buildings as one important part of the Environmental Strategy 2020.
Currently, the new Terminal 2 satellite building at Munich Airport, which will increase passenger capacity by 11 million annually, is under construction. While Terminal 2 already uses photovoltaic installations to capture solar energy, and thereby has fed 445,00kWh annually into the public electricity grid, which is sufficient to cover the yearly power demand of 155 households, the new building goes even further. Scheduled to be completed by 2015, it aims at a 40 percent reduction in CO2 emissions compared to Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 at Munich Airport.
Measures, such as a modern displacement ventilation technology for climate control as well as lighting with LEDs and dimming technology are implemented to achieve this reduction of the building’s environmental impact. An internal climate façade of roughly 16.200m2 will create a climate buffer zone between the two skins of the façade, and thereby further increases the energy efficiency of the building. In addition, the smart design of the satellite building allows passengers to change levels in the cavity between these façades.
Saving fuel and reducing emissions
Saving fuel and thus reducing emissions is one of the core targets of all Lufthansa Group Companies who are well aware of their responsibility to contribute to the global protection of climate and environment. One of the latest projects to fulfill that aim was the development of new lighter and thus more fuel-efficient transportation containers. Within the last three years Lufthansa Cargo has already completely replaced its fleet of aluminum containers with these new ultra-light containers made of extremely durable composite materials.
These new standard containers that are used to transport cargo shipments and passenger baggage in all Lufthansa aircraft are up to 15 percent lighter than their predecessors. This is a difference in weight of around 14 kilograms and by up to 500,000 movements per year, about 2,000 tons of fuel can be saved by only using these containers. That way, the environment will be relieved of around 7,000 tons of CO2. Having 5,600 units in total and thus operating the world’s largest fleet of lightweight containers, the Lufthansa Group shows strong commitment within that field of sustainability.
Besides the increased fuel efficiency due to the lower weight, the new containers have the additional advantage of being less prone to damage. Despite consisting of almost 100 percent of plastic, they are extremely robust and durable which leads to a reduction in repair costs as well. For all this effort, Lufthansa Cargo has already been awarded with the international environmental award ÖkoGlobe in 2012.
An exemplary recycling initiative
As globally operating corporation, the Lufthansa Group is well aware of its leading role in setting standards in the field of climate and environment protection. As part of this general responsibility, the Lufthansa catering subsidiary LSG Sky Chefs started an exemplary recycling initiative in the United States in February last year. The “Zero Waste to Land (ZLF)” project aims to divert 100-percent of recyclable waste from previously designated landfills at all of the 41LSG locations in the USA by 2015.
By now, 6,545 tonnes of waste has already been successfully recycled, representing a reduction in greenhouse gases of almost 21,000 tonnes – despite the fact that the new processes have only been implemented by nine LSG locations in the US yet. The amount mentioned is equivalent to the annual energy saving of 927 households or 3,813 cars not being driven for a year.