Munich Airport is intensifying its existing climate targets as it now intends to achieve net zero by 2035 instead of 2050, as previously announced.
The gateway said achieving net zero means reducing the emissions that the airport itself can influence — known as Scope 1 and 2 emissions — by a minimum of 90%.
The remaining around 10% of emissions must be actively and permanently removed from the atmosphere.
"With the goal of Net Zero by 2035, the five-star airport is once again demonstrating its ambitions in terms of its climate strategy. Climate protection and sustainability are taken very seriously at Munich Airport and implemented in the best possible way," said Minister of State Albert Füracker, chairman of the Supervisory Board.
Jost Lammers, CEO of Munich Airport, noted that achieving the corporate goal of Net Zero by 2035 is challenging and requires great effort in many different areas.
"However, we are taking on this task because, as a green mobility hub, we want to do our part for decarbonized aviation," he said.
To achieve net zero, Munich Airport announced measures planned in four major areas: energy supply, airport-specific facilities and technical infrastructure, buildings, and the vehicle fleet.
In all, the CO2 emissions of the base year 2016 that can be influenced by the airport will be reduced by over 90,000 tons.
With regard to its energy supply, Munich Airport is focusing, among other things, on measures including the use of renewable natural gas (biomethane) for its in-house cogeneration plant, the wide-scale expansion of photovoltaics, the purchase of electricity from renewable sources, and the establishment of an additional power grid to ensure it has access to the green electricity it needs in the future.
In the area of airport-technical facilities, all of the apron lighting has already been switched to LED technology, and the next step involves replacing the runway lighting.
Additional measures include installing more efficient motors in baggage transportation systems and passenger boarding bridges.
When it comes to new construction, Munich Airport is focusing on sustainable, climate-friendly properties with low energy consumption.
The energy performance of existing buildings is being optimized. This includes innovative ventilation technology, efficient lighting, and the optimized control of air conditioning and heating systems based on temperatures and weather forecasts.
Finally, in the area of mobility, Munich Airport said it intends to convert its vehicle fleet to electric drives. Where this is not possible, it said that it will make use of alternative fuels.
The airport currently has over 500 electric vehicles in its vehicle fleet.
In order to permanently remove the remaining around 10% of CO2 emissions, Munich Airport noted that it began turning a commercial forest into a resilient "climate forest" in 2021 — enabling additional carbon dioxide to be removed from the atmosphere and subsequently captured for the long term.
Other carbon removal projects are currently being examined.
"As Munich Airport wants to make a general contribution to environmentally friendly aviation, it is pursuing a dual climate strategy and is also committed to minimizing climate-damaging CO2 emissions for which it is not directly responsible," the gateway — one of Germany's busiest air cargo hub — added.
Munich Airport noted that a range of additional measures and projects are being implemented to support the companies based there — especially airlines — to lower their own carbon emissions.
It said that the reduction in these Scope 3 emissions will also be supported through joint research and development projects.