Eco-awareness - also on the ground
Naturally, KLM meets all relevant environmental regulations - in the air and on the ground. But we want to do more than just obey the law.
Waste to energy
Traditionally waste and energy is managed centrally, and transport of waste produced CO2 emissions.
Now waste treatment is elevated to a whole new level at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.
Green Energy Technologies is developing a concept in collaboration with KLM Caterings Services and other partners to convert waste into energy.
We remain ambitious, always staying a step ahead.
Read more on sustainable building.
KLM is working on innovative environmental solutions together with leading organisations in the Netherlands and abroad. In the Netherlands, shared ambitions have been laid down in the Knowledge and Innovation Agenda (KIA) and the Strategic Innovation Agenda for Air Transport.
Internationally, we are participating in the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Users Group (SAFUG) en de Aviation Global Deal (AGD) Group.
In addition to its Engine Water Wash method, KLM Engineering & Maintenance has also developed a sustainable painting procedure.
Recycling is also high on the agenda. The department has also introduced better dust disposal equipment and more eco-friendly methods of removing fuel residue and organic waste during aircraft maintenance.
Measures for CO2 reduction
KLM has taken far-reaching measures to reduce CO2 emissions. In terms of flight operations, this includes fleet renewal, fuel-efficient flying and the development of bio-fuels. Our maintenance division has developed an eco-friendly means to wash engines, among other innovations, and our cargo division also contributes to sustainable solutions.
Find out more about our CO2 reduction methods.
Waste and water
When using resources and materials, we always strive to ensure minimum environmental impact. This means not only producing less waste, but also separating and properly disposing the waste produced, and, where possible, processing waste for high-value reuse. We even make energy out of waste. And water consumption is also a key aspect of our environmental policy.
Our aircraft maintenance hangars have special waste separation stations. Responsible disposal of everyday materials, such as batteries and toner cartridges, has become standard practice at KLM. We also reclaim valuable metals from retired parts. The same goes for materials that are harmful to the environment. We’re also careful with the water we use. Water conservation is an integral aspect of our building management system. For instance, we use efficient water taps and we monitor drinking water consumption. Our Environmental Center also recycles the water we use for maintenance, generating enormous savings.
Costly drinking water
We also take great care with drinking water aboard our flights. Based on consumption statistics, we are getting better and better at supplying our aircraft with just the right amount of drinking water. This saves both water and energy. If we take along too much water, the aircraft becomes heavier and fuel consumption increases unnecessarily. Read more on environmentally friendly measures on board.
Every year, we collect about 600,000 kilos of paper and 230,000 kilos of cardboard from our office buildings. All this paper and cardboard is recycled. Naturally we use environmentally friendly paper, with the FSC-label. Another 1,200,000 kilos of paper comes out of the aircraft. All this paper and cardboard is recycled. However, it is even better for the environment if we can reduce paper consumption. We are working on that, including in the cockpit. We took an important step towards creating a “paperless cockpit,” having been granted official permission by the Netherlands civil aviation authorities.
Noise nuisance is an inevitable part of air travel. However, if we do not take appropriate measures, noise impact will continue to grow along with the airline industry. That is why KLM is taking measures to reduce noise wherever it can. We are doing so in close consultation with local residents and businesses, in view of the growth ambitions of our national airport, Schiphol.
Our fleet renewal program includes noise reduction measures. We are tackling this problem at the source – the aircraft itself. Quieter engines, winglets(PDF, 106KB), and further structural modifications all help reduce noise. These measures are projected to reduce noise impact by 12%.
But we are not only tackling noise at the source. Operational alternatives are also effective. These include taxiing on one less engine, night approaches over the North Sea, continuous descent approaches, and better flight logistics. Furthermore, we implement a variety of operational measures to reduce noise based on our dialogue with our surroundings, and we invest substantially in noise insulation projects in local residential areas.
Development at Schiphol
KLM has been working for years towards sustainable, selective and qualitative growth of Mainport Schiphol. We have always been committed to improving the living conditions in the surrounding area wherever possible. For example by taking operational measures to reduce noise pollution through nighttime continuous descent approaches and using different braking techniques. KLM also makes a major financial contribution to noise-insulation projects in the region.
KLM is the world’s first airline to develop a noise-abatement procedure in which departing Boeing 737s adopt a fixed-radius turn; that is, with a deviation of less than 100 metres from the flight path. Similar to other measures, the procedure will be tested in the flight simulator prior to introduction. The technique has been successfully tested between Hoofddorp and Nieuw-Vennep.
The development of Schiphol as well as experiments are carried out in conjunction with local residents, local authorities, Schiphol airport and the Dutch Air Traffic Control. Dutch readers can find out more on the Commissie Regionaal Overleg Schiphol (Schiphol Regional Review Board) website.