WATER EFFICIENCY OPPORTUNITIES AIRPORTS – CHECKLIST Dr Michael H. Smith, Research Fellow, ANU Fenner School of Environment and Society (Funded by the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities) Secure and dependable water resources are essential for the operation of any successful airport. Water is essential for cleaning and maintaining aircraft and rental cars, maintaining grassed areas and landscapes, operating cooling towers and basic amenities, as well as for food and hospitality outlets within the airport complex. Sydney airport, for instance, used, in 2008, a total of 2,830 kilolitres of water every day, or about 31 liters per passenger. This makes the airport one of NSW’s biggest water users. Large savings in potable water can be achieved cost effectively through addressing water leaks, using water efficient amenities, managing water losses from cooling towers, using efficient ways to wash rental cars and sourcing water from alternative sources such as rainwater, stormwater and greywater. Brisbane Airport Corporation has combined such cost effective strategies to achieve the largest potable water reduction in Australia, so far, of 78 per cent whilst achieving annual savings of $2.1 million. This is projected to rise to 82 per cent in coming years as Brisbane Airport Corporation invests in high-quality recycled wastewater for its cooling towers at the Airport. The following checklist is informed by the work of leaders in the airport sector, such as, Brisbane Airport Corporation. This checklist is designed to assist your airport cost effectively achieve significant water savings. This checklist is complimented by a detailed best practice guide also available from the Australian Government’s Water Efficiency Opportunities web portal Step 1 - Embed Water Management in Corporate Governance Structures To ensure water management is embedded in company governance structures as effectively as possible, it is worth checking the following. ‐ Has the airport clearly defined responsibility for water management to someone in senior management who is accountable and responsible for all aspects of water management? Yes No ‐ Are KPI’s related to water management targets and goals built into their senior managers remuneration packages? Yes No ‐ Has the company adopted an environmental strategy, in accord with regulatory requirements, within which water management is a clearly defined priority Yes No ‐ Has an environmental management action plan been developed with water management as a key component to guide the management of environmental issues related to all the company’s electricity plants? Yes No ‐ Do your operations comply with all aspects of the 1997 Airports Act and associated regulations and does the airport have water licence approvals for all relevant aspects of water sourcing and environmental release. Yes No Step 2 – Establish An Effective Water Management System and Team. A water management system creates a foundation for positive change and provides guidance for managing water throughout an organization. ‐ Have you installed an effective system of metering and monitoring water usage? Yes No ‐ Have you set up data management systems to manage the water related information? Yes No ‐ Do you have plans to regularly review water performance? Yes No ‐ Have you committed to developing a water management plan with clear performance goals? Yes No ‐ Does your airport regularly publically report on your water performance? Yes No No matter how well thought out and designed a water management system and water plan is, the key is to ensure there is a good team to implement it. Does your water management team have at least the following members: - Project Manager? (tasked with co-ordinating the overall water conservation and wastewater effort and responsible for accounting for measurable results) Yes No - Assessment task manager? (responsible for collecting and evaluating data) Yes No - Onsite head engineer? (will need to provide input on current practices and the practical ability to implement proposed changes) Yes No - Maintenance staff representative? (will need to provide input on current practices and feasibility of proposed changes.) Yes No - Financial Manager? (to evaluate the costs and benefits of proposed changes) Yes No - Executive management representative? (authorised to approve expenditures for the assessment and prepared to communicate results to the management team or owner, as applicable) Yes No Step 3 – Undertake a Water Audit Undertaking an initial water audit to get a baseline of current water performance is a key first step in developing detailed water saving plans. As part of your water audit have you ‐ Undertaken a water balance (water inputs and outputs) for your airport? Yes No ‐ Quantified how much water is used in each area of operation? Yes No ‐ Calculated your business’s water intensity rate? Yes No ‐ Measured and determined incoming water quality? Yes No ‐ Tested to determine if the source of incoming water meets the required water quality standards? Yes No ‐ Quantified the amount and quality of waste water generated? Yes No ‐ Have you calculated what you are currently paying in water and effluent charges? Yes No ‐ Have you identified potential water saving opportunities? Yes No ‐ Does water quality comply with the National Water Quality Management Strategy Guidelines? Yes No Step 4 - Identifying the Major Areas of Water Usage in Airports Have the major areas of water usage in all your coal mines been identified and quantified? Yes No Has water usage, reuse and water losses in the following areas of your airport been identified and quantified? ‐ Water Leaks Yes No ‐ Amenities (toilets, showers, washing taps) Yes No ‐ Water for Cooling Towers Yes No ‐ Green Landscapes Yes No ‐ Aircraft Washing Yes No ‐ Vehicle Washing Yes No ‐ Kitchen and Catering Yes No ‐ Cleaning and Hygiene Yes No ‐ Fire fighting and training, Yes No ‐ Construction and maintenance activities Yes No Step 5 - Identify and Implement Water Saving, Reuse and Recycling Options for Reducing Potable Water Consumption Have you identified, considered or implemented the following water saving, reuse and recycling options for all your electrical power stations? 1- Have you identified and stopped all water leaks Yes No 2- Have you retrofitted more water efficient amenities (low flow toilets, urinals, taps, shower heads) Yes No 3- Have you retrofitted more water efficient amenities (low flow toilets, urinals, taps, shower heads) Yes No 4- Have you examined all potential ways to save water in cooling towers. Yes No ‐ Are you monitoring and reducing unnecessary cooling tower blowdown to optimise the process and reduce water waste? Yes No ‐ Have you increased the number of times water is recycled through the cooling towers (‘cycling up’) to produce savings? Yes No 5- Have you investigated alternative cooling approaches such as dry cooling or hybrid cooling systems? Yes No 6- If located near the ocean, have you investigated the option of saline water cooling? Yes No 7- Have you investigated options to use recycled water for cooling towers? Yes No 8- Have all opportunities to harvest, treat and recycle rain and stormwater and operational water runoff and effluent been explored for the airport? Yes No 9- Is their opportunity, if new terminals or buildings are being built to utilise “Siphonic Roof Drainage Systems” to enhance rainwater harvesting? . Yes No 10- Have you implemented all aspects of good water efficiency green landscape management (drought tolerant plants, water efficient irrigation, only watering at night etc) Yes No 11- Are you working with tenants, contractors and sub-contractors to identify and implement cost effective water saving plans that are complying with all aspects of water management related regulations? Yes No 12- Do airlines using your airport use recycled water for aircraft washing? Do you recycle the wastewater from aircraft washing? Yes No 13- Do car hire company tenants use recycled water for vehicle washing? Do you recycle the wastewater from aircraft washing? Yes No Step 6 - Undertake Cost Benefit Analysis: Have you calculated the capital and operational costs of implementing the water saving options by considering both direct and indirect costs? Yes No Have you calculated the benefits of implementing the measure by considering both direct and indirect costs? Yes No Have you determined the return on investment? Yes No If installing new water treatment and recycling infrastructure have you factored all the benefits and costs such as depreciation, maintenance, energy and chemical costs? Yes No Step 7 - Develop Key Performance Indicators Have you adopted appropriate KPIs? Yes No Step 8 – Set Performance Targets? Have you set appropriate short and long term performance targets? Yes No Step 9 Monitoring, Auditing, Review, and Reporting Have you installed meters and sensors to enable regular monitoring and auditing of water usage, water quality and wastewater production? Yes No Have you put in place systems of auditing to enable regular monthly reviews of water management performance? Yes No Are you annually publically reporting your water management and water efficiency performance? Yes No Step 10 – Partner with Business Water Saving Initiatives – eg: UN Global Compact CEO Water Mandate. Water initiatives like the UN Global Compact encourage companies to consider the following; Have you undertaken supply chain analysis to see if there are significant embodied (virtual water) water issues which need to be addressed? Yes No Have you checked to see if there are alternative feedstocks, energy sources, or supply chains which have lower embodied water? Yes No Have you initiated water saving programs with your supply chain to help save water? Yes No Have you initiated programs to enhance the quality and conservation of water in water catchments from which your airport sources its water? Yes No Disclaimer: While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure that the contents of this publication are factually correct, the parties involved in the development of this document do not accept responsibility for the accuracy or completeness of the contents. 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