A Carbon Neutral ‘Airport Carbon Accredited’ Airport Leader: Swedavia

Context of Transport Climate Action

Swedavia owns, operates and develops Stockholm Arlanda Airport and nine other Swedish airports. Since 2011 all ten airports have achieved the highest level of Airport Carbon Accreditation (Carbon Neutrality). Swedavia’s objective is to have zero fossil carbon dioxide emissions from its own operations by 2020. This will require them to use technological advances in collaboration with partners.

Environmental issues have been a priority for Stockholm Arlanda Airport for a long time. Based on its initiatives to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, the airport has achieved the highest level of Airport Carbon Accreditation since 2009. The airport’s buildings are warmed up with district heating from biofuel and all electricity purchased is produced from renewable sources, biofuel, solar, wind and hydropower, and the airport’s vehicles are gradually being replaced and biofuels are being implemented. The emissions of fossil carbon dioxide from airport´s own operations have been cut by 75 percent since 2005. However, to achieve the zero objective by 2020, the airports own vehicle fleet plays a critical role as it today accounts for more than 90 per cent of the remaining carbon dioxide emissions.


Using more renewable fuels and reducing energy use are two key factors in the airport´s climate work. Swedavia is continuously striving to reduce the number of vehicles and replace today’s fossil fuels in operations at the airport. The aim is for biofuels to completely replace fossil fuels in Swedavia’s vehicles by 2020.

Swedavia has about 800 vehicles operating at ten airports. An ongoing vehicle replacement programme is in place to renew and replace the fossil fuel vehicles with electric, biogas or bio-based synthetic diesel vehicles. Today the vehicle fleet that serves the airport is powered by three main fuels, electricity, biogas and diesel. The electricity is considered to be completely a “green” fuel and the gas for vehicles is wholly or mainly of biogas (renewable) and supplemented with a small proportion of natural gas (fossil fuel based). By 2020 the gas procured shall be 100% biogas. One challenge is also to develop renewable fuels, in particular biodiesel that withstand the low winter temperatures in Sweden.

Since the automotive market has not always been able to offer solutions that meet the airport´s environmental objectives, Swedavia has also chosen to work directly with suppliers to create new solutions for special purpose airport vehicles.


Fossil CO2-emissions(tonnes) from Swedavia´s own operations at ten Swedish airports. (Green bars refer to projected emissions)


Increasing the availability and use of renewable fuel is the decisive factor in reaching the zero emission objective, since the vehicle fleet accounts for more than 90 per cent of the remaining fossil emissions from operations. Vehicles are being gradually replaced, with the aim of having the entire vehicle fleet run on biogas, electricity or biodiesel by 2020.

The introduction of fossil-free fuel is being done in collaboration with partners, developing the infrastructure for electricity and biogas at the airport and preparing plans how to make all diesel used by the airport renewable. Swedavia is also taking part in discussions with fuel companies to involve them in the development of new fuels.

The snow removal equipment used at the airport, also known as plough, sweep and blow (PSB) machines, is now being replaced with the world´s first biogas Towed Jet Sweepers, developed by Swedavia in partnership with Volvo and Aebi Schmidt.

By 2020 Swedavia plans to invest about SEK 1.2 billion in new vehicles, both snow removal equipment and lighter vehicles, for which the additional cost for environmentally adapted vehicles is about SEK 100 million.

Airport Carbon Accreditation is important and helpful in making the in strategic decisions for concrete actions resulting in reduced emissions and energy use.


Examples of new alternative fuelled vehicles and investments in the airports vehicle fleet


Swedavia has reduced the emissions of fossil carbon dioxide from its own operations at Stockholm Arlanda Airport by approximately 75 % since 2005. The emissions that remain, approximately 1000 tonnes, are almost fully generated by vehicles used at the airport.

The new snow removing equipment, TJS, that is introduced at the airport runs on up to 90 per cent biogas and the remainder green diesel. As these vehicles use approximately 40 liters of diesel per hour the transition to biogas provides significant environmental effects. This venture is however both economically and environmentally sustainable as along with reduced carbon dioxide emissions, the switchover has also reduced fuel costs and lowered maintenance costs by standardising the vehicle fleet.

Potential for scaling up

Sustainability is an integral part of Swedavia’s operations and strategies. Our ability to think and act sustainably is fundamental to our future as a company and so that we can continue to create value for our stakeholders and for society in general. In each sustainability perspective: environmental concerns, social development and economic aspects, we have concrete strategies and measurable targets that set the course for both management and communication. The targets are then broken down into operational areas and made concrete through activities. Our targets and activities are monitored on a continuous basis in terms of the level of achievement of the targets and global developments.

Our long term objective of zero carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel for airport operations by 2020 is critical in driving our environmental work and there are a number of objectives connected to this. One important measure has been the development of a strategy for switching to a fossil-free vehicle fleet. Since the automotive market have not been able to offer solutions that meet the airport´s environmental objectives, Swedavia has chosen to work with suppliers to create new solutions, driving the market forward.

Furthermore, Airport Carbon Accreditation helps us in our long-term efforts to offer our passengers a fossil free journey.


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Europe, Sweden, Mitigation, Trucks, Aviation, Technology, Partnerships, Awareness





”Swedavia shall continue to address environmental issues, one of the greatest challenges in the air travel industry. Today we are already a leading player internationally in our environmental work, and we are developing into a role model for the entire sustainability field. Swedavia shall achieve its target of zero fossil carbon dioxide emissions, continue to link together various modes of transport and contribute to greater use of mass transit to and from its airports. We shall support airlines in the transition to biofuels so that our passengers can be provided with a fossil free journey.”
-Torborg Chetkovich
President and CEO, Swedavia