Heathrow - quadruple certification to the Carbon Trust Standard

Heathrow - quadruple certification to the Carbon Trust Standard

Heathrow, Europe’s busiest airport, first achieved the Carbon Trust Standard for Supply Chain in 2016. This recognised the work that the airport had done to measure and reduce carbon emissions upstream of its operations. In achieving this, Heathrow became the first airport in the world to be awarded quadruple certification to the Carbon Trust Standard, as the airport also received recognition for its work in reducing carbon emissions, water use, and waste from its own operations.


View of inside Heathrow airport

To secure its first certification Heathrow worked with the Carbon Trust to develop a hotspot analysis to understand the emissions in its supply chain, which then allowed the airport to prioritise engagement with its major suppliers, targeting carbon reductions in strategic areas. To deliver on this, the airport has used a number of different engagement techniques, such as quarterly supplier workshops and the establishment of the Heathrow Sustainability Partnership, a forum for suppliers which aims to promote practical sustainability solutions and best practice.

The success of Heathrow’s efforts since it began the certification process has meant that, over time, the airport has been able to extend its work deeper and more broadly into its supply chain, and is progressively working to address more material areas of impact.

In 2018 the airport received a higher level of certification to the Carbon Trust Standard for Supply Chain, at the second level of achievement under the framework. This recognised the progress Heathrow had made in implementing carbon reduction projects with each of the Tier 1 suppliers previously identified as targets for engagement and action. Some of these projects include optimisation of bus routes, an increase in use of electric vehicles, using equipment with chargeable batteries, replacing the use of diesel, and sourcing materials with lower embedded emissions where possible.

This engagement work with suppliers has also led Heathrow into pursuing a more bespoke and sophisticated data analysis to fully understand their impact across its business, which incorporates transport, retail, property and logistics. In line with the Heathrow 2.0 sustainability strategy, the airport has been able to refine its approach through finding higher impact ways in which to positively influence suppliers, and is currently on track to achieve Carbon Trust Standard for Supply Chain at its highest level, where an organisation is able to demonstrate quantifiable reductions as a result of its activities.

We are incredibly proud to hold the Carbon Trust Standard, recognising the work that we have done to reduce our environmental impact across our business and beyond. We recognise that the complexity of our business actually provides us with a real opportunity to engage with a wide range of organisations to promote sustainable solutions in line with our ambitions as a global leader in sustainability. We were the first airport to sign the Paris Pledge for Action after COP21, and we are committed to doing our part to curb climate change.

Steve Ballard, Cost & Pricing Manager, Heathrow Airport