Liquid bio-methane trials at East Midlands airport

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Liquid bio-methane (LBM) trials at East Midlands airport are in progress. A single airport passenger bus is currently running on the fuel which is completely carbon neutral. The airport is claiming that this is a world first and shows the measures they are taking to tackle climate change.

Liquid bio-methane is created by decomposing biomass in landfill sites. It can also be found as an industrial by-product. The production of liquid bio-methane (LBM) is great for the environment as it takes greenhouse gases and transforms them into a fuel. This fuel can then be used to power vehicles. This replaces the need for natural gas, thus preventing unnecessary pollution.

The benefits of East Midlands airport using this fuel will be the obvious reduction in CO2 emissions. It is also hoped that the air quality at the airport will be improved. Gasrec - the first producer in the UK of liquid bio-methane - will be supplying the fuel and running the experimental bus route in conjunction with East Midlands airport. This is a small part of a larger plan which will see them become entirely carbon neutral by the year 2012.

The Director of Sustainability at East Midlands airport, Neil Robertson commented on the experimental bus route saying, “We have made significant efforts in recent years to mitigate the environmental impacts of our operations and we are really proud to be launching another airport first.”

East Midlands airport has a history of environmentally friendly activities. They were the first airport in the UK to put forward plans for four wind turbines with the aim of generating 10 per cent of the airports electricity requirements from them. The efforts have not ended there with the airport also investing in electric and bio-diesel (chip fat) fuels for powering vehicles. The bio-diesel vehicles make use of chip fat from fast food outlets.

East Midlands airport have announced that they are half way to their 2012 carbon neutrality targets. This has been achieved by several projects such as ground operations in and around the airport.

Penny Coates, Managing Director at East Midlands airport said; “There are environmental impacts that come with the operation of an airport such as East Midlands, but how we deal with them is part of our strategy towards becoming carbon neutral by 2012. The Airport’s forward thinking approach will ensure that we meet our environmental commitments in the long term for this business.”

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