The Environment

Environmental Performance

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Environmental Performance

As a responsible business, effectively managing and continuously improving our environmental performance is important to us. It is our commitment to identify the relevant areas for action and reporting by engaging and responding to our stakeholders.

We are developing performance targets for ground activities, including our CO2 emissions, energy efficiency and resource consumption, to help us better manage our carbon and resource use. These targets will be adopted and reported in 2011.

Key issues raised by stakeholders on our Environmental Performance
Overall performance. Inflight waste. Resource efficiency. Air quality and noise impacts. Responsible sourcing.
Air quality and our emissions from ground operations

The Hong Kong government monitors air quality around the Hong Kong International Airport. Local levels of air emissions from aviation in Hong Kong have remained relatively stable over recent years at 6% of nitrogen oxides (NOx), 3% of carbon monoxide (CO) and 2% of other air pollutants.

Flight operations affect local air quality, especially during take-off and landing. The technological innovations, air traffic management and infrastructure management discussed in the Climate Change section all help mitigate local air emissions in Hong Kong, together with a number of other initiatives on the ground including improving the energy efficiency of our buildings, vehicle fleet and equipment stock.

Our wholly-owned subsidiary, Hong Kong Airport Services (HAS), has the largest vehicle fleet in the Group, and is the largest ground handling agent in Hong Kong, serving 35 airlines. Leading our vehicle replacement strategy, HAS is steadily replacing its 537 fleet of vehicles and now 23% of its fleet comprises lower emission vehicles that meet higher standards, such as seven Euro 4 vehicles and 117 electric vehicles. HAS will phase out all pre-Euro and Euro 1 cars in 2011, thereby further reducing local air emissions. Its target is to reduce 12% CO2 emissions per air traffic movement (ATM) by 2015 based on 2007 emission levels.

With electricity supply support from the Hong Kong Airport Authority, HAS introduced a new dual power lower deck loader in December 2010. Following from last year's report, HAS has successfully conducted two trials on posi-chargers for its electric tractors. More technical information will be collected in the coming year in order to confirm the suitability of these chargers. In November 2010, HAS completed the first trial of the real-time task allocation system, which would improve logistics of movement and help to locate equipment more rapidly. A re-trial will be conducted in early 2011 upon fine-tuning of its system. Ground Support Equipment (GSE) that are aged and have heavy tailpipe emissions will continue to be replaced under the ongoing GSE Replacement Program.

Another of our wholly-owned subsidiary, Cathay Pacific Catering Services (CPCS), is one of the largest flight kitchens in the world, and serves 34 airlines in Hong Kong and other locations. Currently, only ultra-low sulphur diesel is used at CPCS and high loader vehicles are steadily being replaced. At the same time, CPCS is improving the efficiency of its kitchen boilers and constantly monitoring boiler emissions. In 2010, diesel consumption was reduced by 96,000 litres with the installation of hydroflow technology in the steam boiler system. The replacement of coldroom evaporator coils in 2009 and 2010 has also helped reduce the consumption of refrigerants from 4,680 lbs in 2008 to 2,952 lbs in 2010.

Vogue Laundry Service, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Cathay Pacific, is Asia's largest single-site laundry, employing over 600 staff and serving over 20 airlines, 23 hotels and with a daily output of 261,000 items, equivalent to 74 tonnes of laundry. It is the first laundry in Hong Kong to be accredited to the ISO 14001 environmental management standard and the OHSAS 18001 occupational health and safety standard.

Vogue has continued to reduce emissions through active carbon absorption in the dry cleaning machines and from perchloroethylene, a volatile organic compound (VOC) consumed during the dry cleaning process. Consumption of this solvent was 6.4% less in 2010 than in 2009. In 2010, a variable speed compressor was introduced, and the compressed air distribution system was upgraded, achieving direct total electricity savings of 3% to 5%. This system consists of an automatic switch control, which provides improved compressor room ventilation, air distribution and configuration. In order to achieve a further 5% saving in boiler fuel use, Vogue will be installing a new flash steam recovery system to recover waste steam for use by the boiler to generate hot water.

Vogue currently runs 32 vehicles, 40% of which are Euro 3 or above (11 Euro 3 and two Euro 4 respectively).