Cochin International Airport Limited (CIAL) will soon be awarded the 2018 ‘Champion Of Earth’ award, which is the highest environmental honour given by the United Nations(UN).
The award is being given to honour the successful implementation of the solar energy project at the airport.
A special team led by Mr Erik Solheim, Executive Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP),had visited the Cochin Airport to study about its solar initiatives. They held a discussion with the chief minister of Kerala, Mr. Pinarayi Vijayan, who is also the chairman of CIAL.
Managing director of CIAL, Mr. V J Kurian, has said that Cochin International Airport has set an ambitious example by becoming the world’s first fully solar-powered airport and he hopes that others will follow their example.
He also said that CIAL has shown the world that big infrastructure projects like airport can be operated using alternative sources of energy.
United Nations established the “Champions Of Earth” award in 2005 to recognise outstanding environmental leaders from public/private and the civil society.
CIAL has been chosen in the “Action & Inspiration” Category, which recognises individuals or organizations that have taken bold environmental action, and in doing so, inspired others to follow in their footsteps.
By September 2018, CIAL will increase the airport’s solar plant capacity, from 30 Milliwatt power to 40 Milliwatt power, which will produce 60 million units of power every year. This will help the airport cut energy costs by Rs 40 Crore per annum and reduce carbon emissions by more than 9 lakh metric tons over the next 25 years.
The prestigious award will be presented at a gala ceremony which will be held near the UN General Assembly, in New York, on 26th September 2018.
Cochin Airport, which was the first Indian airport to be developed under a public-private partnership, had handled 10 million passengers last year. It also witnessed a 22% increase in the domestic passenger volume and 4% increase in international passenger arrivals in the Financial Year 2017-2018.